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Barts Hospital stages art exhibition and fundraising sale

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by Cancer Research UK | News

29 September 2006

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A poignant exhibition is to go on display to the public at Barts Hospital in memory of artist Susie Brown who died of cancer earlier this year.

Susie, of south Hackney, was a popular artist who produced a wide variety of paintings and sketches for gallery exhibitions across the capital. She passed away in March aged 59 after losing a 22 year battle against breast cancer and Krukenberg cancer.

Robert Ward, Susie’s long-term partner, though it would be fitting to stage an exhibition of her art at Barts Hospital where she was an in-patient for all of her treatment. Vital Arts, the pioneering arts project for Barts and The London NHS Trust, were delighted to organise such a display, especially since Susie had been a strong supporter of art in healthcare through her participation on the hospital’s Patient Support Group and Art Steering Group. As a result a number of her artworks will now go on view to the public in the Outpatients Hall of the Hospital from Wednesday, October 11.

Susie’s particular passion was to create images that used the subject of the body as a starting point to explore not only the negative effects of serious illness but also how her experience gave her a greater sense of the joy of life itself.

In addition to the permanent exhibition in the Outpatients Hall organisers are also inviting the public to a special art sale on Tuesday, October 10. This will include some of Susie’s life sketches and drawings and take place in the West Wing conference room at Barts Hospital. Some of the artworks cost as little as £20 and all the money raised will go towards future hospital art projects.

Robert said: “Susie would have been so pleased with this exhibition and art sale, especially as it will help support the use of art in hospitals. She strongly believed in the power of art to act as a healing tool. As a person she was different and everyone she met agreed that there was something special about her. She had a natural goodness and was very caring.

“I think it is also fitting that the exhibition takes place during Breast Cancer Awareness month as this was another cause close to her heart.”

Anne Mulins, Vital Arts Director, said: “Susie was a really marvellous woman for whom we all have very fond memories. It is a pleasure to stage an exhibition in recognition of her talent and also pay tribute to her commitment and support for art in hospitals.”

Susie was a keen supporter of Cancer Research UK and helped the charity to raise awareness of cancer by sharing her experiences of the disease with a wide audience via the media.

Cancer Research UK spokesman Martin McGlown said: “Susie was an inspirational woman who was determined to make a difference through generating awareness of the disease and helping to raise money to fund vital cancer research. I’m sure other women who read about her story would have become more ‘breast aware’ as a result.”

The exhibition will be unveiled at 6pm on Tuesday 10 October at the Outpatients Hall and includes an introductory speech. This will be followed by the artwork sale in the West Wing conference room. If you would like to attend the launch or art sale please contact Tiffany Radmore on 0207 480 4654.

For more information please contact Malcolm Bennie 020 7480 4843 or Marie Mangan 020 7480 4891 or visit Barts and the London’s website