San Diego Magazine and Madison Gallery announce the
The Healing Art Fund.
Jim Fitzpatrick, CEO and Publisher of San Diego Magazine, Lorna York, CEO and owner of the Madison Gallery in La Jolla, CA, and Dutch-American artist Luc Leestemaker, announced at the 7th Annual Top Doctors Gala at the Natural History Museum on Saturday October 23rd, the inauguration of the “Healing Art Fund:” a concept for a new way of giving for and to the Southern California medical community.
After interviews with Dutch/American artist Luc Leestemaker,
the initiative arose to link the healing modality of art to
the medical Healing Arts.
“Over the last few years a large number of academic studies have shown the undeniable power that art can have in people’s lives and environments,” said Leestemaker. “Inspiring art can help lower blood pressure, stimulate digestion, activate people’s brain cells. In a medical environment studies have shown that art can have powerful and positive effects on patients’ immune systems and post-surgery recovery time.”
Luc Leestemaker has received positive responses from patients and doctors who interact with his work placed in medical facilities such as Banner Estrella Medical Campus, Arizona; Genzyme Pharmaceuticals, Boston; Dana Farber Hospital, Boston, to name a few. Inspired by these reactions, Leestemaker came up with the idea to annually donate one of his paintings to a public space in a medical facility in San Diego County. “What better way for an artist to give back to society,” Leestemaker said, “than through his own work, and how inspiring to know that you can literally improve people’s lives through your work!” Leestemaker relates how he himself a number of years ago, when checking into a hospital for surgery, was acutely aware of how the environment influenced his mood. “You’re in a hyper sensitive state. You want to be surrounded by uplifting, soothing tones. Something that recognizes the seriousness of your situation, linked with comfort, perspective and trust.”
Jim Fitzpatrick (CEO, Publisher San Diego Magazine): “We have a long standing relationship with the medical community of San Diego County through our annual Top Doc Gala, and I felt that the creation of the Healing Art Fund and the partnership with Madison Gallery and Luc Leestemaker provided a great opportunity for San Diego Magazine to enhance its active role in the local community.”
This year, Madison Gallery hosted a pre-gala reception to honor the doctors who were awarded the title of San Diego Magazine’s “Top Doc.” Ms. York curated an exhibition of Luc Leestemaker’s paintings, combined with findings from recent studies that reveal the impact of art in medical environments. (photo exhibit) At the event, invited guests were given the opportunity to vote for a public medical facility in San Diego to receive a painting by Leestemaker. The selected painting was revealed at the event and later announced the recipient at the 7th Annual Top Doctors Gala on October 23, 2010.
This year’s winning facility is the brand new Surgical Center of San Diego, which will open its doors in November. With the establishment of the Healing Art Fund, Fitzpatrick, York and Leestemaker invite others to join in this effort to bring art into the medical community through donated funds and collaborations. Lorna York: “While Luc Leestemaker’s commitment to an annual donation is a wonderful and inspiring beginning, there is no reason the program can’t get accelerated and broadened.” Eventually the plan is to endow the Healing Art Fund with monetary gifts and corporate sponsorships which will allow for ongoing funding of art and cultural projects in San Diego County’s medical facilities.
Lorna York (CEO, owner Madison Gallery) said, ”Since opening my doors our goal has always been to play an active role in the local community. Over the years, I’ve witnessed how inspiring art can be and how it can create magic in people’s lives and environments.” York plans to hold informal receptions at the gallery throughout the year, being a platform for the medical community; the doctors, related industries and the academic world.
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