GOSH's Big Draw

October 2015 saw the first ever Family Arts Week take over Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH). Part of the national Family Arts Festival event, the week has been run by GOSH Arts, the hospital’s arts programme, and the Activity Centre.

Patients were involved in a whole host of creative activities, from making inky insects, joining in with a traditional Indonesian music ensemble, writing raps to contributing to The Big Draw.

The Big Draw is part of the international campaign for drawing, which inspires people of all ages to use drawing to make sense of the world around them and to communicate their ideas.

Artist Tanya Kaprielian popped in to help children and their families create a collaborative artwork, transforming a little corner of GOSH into their own world.

On the first day, children made their own unconventional drawing tools, from twigs, corks, tubes and even hair brushes. Five-year-old Drew said: "I liked making all the inventions, it made me feel super!"

Drew - Hospital School
Drew was one of the patients to get involved.

The Big Draw's crafty kids

They then used their invented tools and created a three dimensional set, dipping them in paint and filling the white space in the set with different shapes and colours.

On the second day, children used frames to look more closely at the shapes and patterns they had created and discovered lots of amazing things in the seemingly abstract forms. In among the splashes and speckles, they spotted flowers, buildings and dragons.

Photo of Summer.
Summer also joined in with the activites.

GOSH patients turn into artists for the day

Ten-year-old Molly said: “This looks like a wizard!” While Yasmin said: “I’m going to turn this one into a giraffe."

On the last day, the children introduced colour and three dimensional shapes. A cityscape emerged, with a giant rhino on one side and a huge skyscraper on the other.

The children were given absolute freedom to work independently and to take ownership of the space around them. One patient even wrote a poem about the shapes she could see in her marks.

Photo of Molly.
Molly was one of the patients to take part.

One GOSH parent said: “The children have come twice this week and have loved it!” While another commented: “Great distraction from being in the ward. He loves the instruments and especially the painting.

GO Create! 

Another parent described her amazement that her child, who refused to pick up a pencil before coming along to The Big Draw, was completely transfixed by the experience and spent several hours painting.