Arterie’s stellar year thus far | Chris O'Brien Lifehouse
 In Arterie, Lifehouse News

Arterie has been a hive of activity during the first half of the year with some of the highlights being art projects and celebrations for Chinese New Year, World Cancer Day, International Volunteers Day and International Nurses Day, as well as the normal weekly activities.

And there are still many exciting events coming up in the next few months. Everyone in the Lifehouse Community is welcome to join the Arterie projects. No experience or materials are required.

The Listening Chairs

Anyone walking through our foyer recently would have seen two colourful new additions. The “Listening Chairs” are the project of our June Artist in Residence Fiona Edmeades from Love That Chair Upholstery.

After many weeks of scouring eBay, the perfect chair frames were found. “The hardest part of the project was finding lightweight chairs with a pleasing design that were suitable for this style of upholstery”, says Fiona.

The chairs were upholstered offsite due to the dirt and dust generated by the process. The fabric used to cover them was a joint effort from the Arterie Open Studio community including patients, carers, staff and volunteers.

The fabric is decorated with sashiko stitching, a popular Japanese embroidery style where each stitch resembles a grain of rice.

These linen panels were painstakingly stitched by over 80 contributors from our Carterie and Open Studio programs, and the Arterie Pit Crew helped sew the panels together.

Patients, carers and visitors are welcome to enjoy a relaxing chat or a moment of reflection in these comfortable and inviting chairs.

Knitter Knatter Open Studio

The fifth, and by far the most successful, Knitter Knatter Open Studio was held on 20 June.

Joined by special guests Gail O’Brien and Fran Boyer, patients and staff knitted and crocheted together to create countless beanies and rainbow rugs or to try out a new shawl pattern. At the same time as having a good yarn over a cup of tea, the team supported the Australian wool industry with their choice of pure Aussie wool. When completed, all these wonderful creations are gifted to patients. Luckily a wonderful donation of wool arrived on the morning of the workshop – synchronicity at play!

This year’s event also farewelled Assistant Director of Nursing Cath McKnight who has been integral in the annual World Hand Hygiene Day project every May. Arterie also announced the inaugural ‘Jennie Connolly Memorial Craft Award’. The first award went to Fay for her design of the original Arterie beanie pattern.

Lastly, the group celebrated all things stripy – highlighting a fascinating area of Radiation Oncology using modulated treatments known as stripes to treat the cancer more precisely. This is a true collaboration of art and science.

The group is looking greatly forward to the next textile event, Slow Stitching, later this year.

Nicole Hutton returns with Botanica

Following her Artist in Residency in February and the Big Little Creatures project in April, Nicole Hutton returned to Lifehouse in Autumn for a new residency. Nicole is working on her Botanica project which involves the art of pen and ink stylised drawings of flora and fauna.

This residency has been sponsored by the family of Joyce Chen. Joyce was a mother, interior designer and artist who passed away from cancer in 2018. Botanica pays homage to Joyce’s meticulous and beautiful botanical flora and fauna ink drawings that are on display throughout the hospital.

When the project is completed, the artwork created by the Lifehouse Community will be compiled, bound and presented to Joyce’s family.

Big Little Creatures Project

In April, Arterie Open Studio participants entered the Big Little Creatures community craft challenge. This challenge and subsequent exhibition was organised by clever creatives The Creatory and sponsored by The Inner West Council and Reverse Garbage. The creatures in question had to be made from 50 per cent recycled materials and any format and fixing method could be used.

Thirteen entries were submitted for exhibition at the Stirrup Gallery in Marrickville. Entries varied from Jenny’s Emmi the elephant made from scraps of yarn and fabric found in the Arterie yarn box, Yi’s dragon made from buttons and plastic and Carol’s pink cat made from recycled bra cups.

At the exhibition opening the Arterie group was thrilled to receive the Creatory Prize for their work. We can’t wait to get started on the 2019 challenge.


Cartier runs every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the hospital. Thank you to our lovely volunteers who have their mobile art studios at the ready with arts and crafts projects for patients and visitors to explore their creativity. Keep an eye out for our lovely, bright orange volunteers wandering the hospital or simply call Deborah on 0429 100 960 to be linked up with a roving Carterist.

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