In Tribute

Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals’ Organ Donation Committee and Royal Liverpool Dialysis Utilities Fund have awarded Luke Jerram the commission to create a Tribute ‘Donation and Transplant’ Artwork. The installation will be on display in the main reception area of the new Royal Liverpool University Hospital (RLBUHT), the artwork is due to be unveiled when the new hospital opens. The artwork, will celebrate, remember and give thanks to the generosity of organ and tissue donors and their families.

Through its round tower-like form, the artwork will act as a strong internal landmark within the building. A doorway cut in to its side will draw visitors to explore inside. Beautiful patterns of coloured light emanating from the semitransparent structure will be viewed from all angles, creating visual intrigue for visitors. The experience inside the structure will alter with the changing daylight streaming in to the atrium from above.

Upon entering the artwork, visitors can stand or sit on the in-built seating. They will notice that many of the translucent coloured panels have printed text on them, which are extracts from personal responses and stories collected from patients and staff of the hospital, illustrating the impact which organ and tissue donation has had on their lives. Including contributions from dialysis patients, each story will express the positive impact the hospitals’ services have had.

Looking up at the mirrored ceiling or down onto the reflective floor of the artwork, the space within the structure will appear infinite. This beautiful optical property expresses the concept that the effect of donation goes on and on and that there are thousands of people around the globe, each with their personal stories to tell, who have benefited from the work of the RLBUHT.

Whether old or young, the artwork can be experienced and appreciated by everyone visiting the hospital. Some may simply enjoy it visually by looking at the geometry, colours and reflections, whilst others will stop to consider the artwork in more depth, sit a while, read the stories and appreciate its greater meaning. Subtly referencing stained glass windows, the artwork will provide an intimate space for contemplation and reflection. Which way the artwork is read will depend in part on what the visitor brings to the piece. Through its visual, written and conceptual content, the artwork will celebrate, remember and give thanks to the generosity of organ and tissue donors and their families.