Operation Art: Artwork created by kids, for sick kids

Operation Art officially opened its doors last Saturday (9 Sept) with more than 900 students across New South Wales showcasing their artistic talents to help make sick kids feel better through the power of art.

Hosted at the Armory Gallery, Operation Art is an initiative of The Children’s Hospital at Westmead in association with the New South Wales Department of Education and in collaboration with Sydney Olympic Park Authority. It involves school students from Kindergarten to Year 10 in all NSW schools creating artworks for children in hospital.

This year, 796 artworks from 910 students across 254 New South Wales schools were submitted into the exhibition with the sole purpose of creating art to motivate and sooth patients in a hospital setting. Among the hundreds submitted, 50 artworks were chosen to be part of The Children’s Hospital at Westmead permanent art collection. An additional 150 artworks were also chosen for display in The Office of the Children’s Guardian, Advocate For Children and Young People, the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) as well as many regional hospitals.

The Top 50 artworks selected are:

  • Kendra, Regentville Public School
  • Ryan, Eglinton Public School
  • Alice, Gunnedah South Public School
  • Charlie, Gunnedah South Public School
  • Teliya, Oakville Public School
  • Shari, Milton Public School
  • Daniel, Homebush Boys High School
  • Jongwon, Homebush Boys High School
  • Sophie, Cronulla Public School
  • Mollie, Narrabeen Lakes Public School
  • Aaron, Clemton Park Public School
  • Collaborative Artwork: K  - 1, Turramurra North Public School
  • Nikola, Ryde Public School
  • Keira, Kareela Public School
  • Isla, Engadine High School
  • Holly, Allambie Heights Public School
  • Shell, Old Bar Public School
  • William, Dubbo School of Distance Education
  • Jackson, Belmont High School
  • Niya, John Palmer Public School
  • Marley, Kellyville Ridge Public School
  • Annie, Tacking Point Public School
  • Brody, Tamworth Public School
  • Shruti, Rosehill Public School
  • Aarna, Rosehill Public School
  • Jaiden, Binalong Public School
  • Jirawan, Waniora Public School
  • Bailey, Murringo Public School
  • Siosaia, Chullora Public School

Operation Art Coordinator, Lisa van den Dolder says, “Research shows that bright, colourful, optimistic artwork can play a vital role in the healing process, giving children an outlet or distraction during long hospital stays and this year the students have really captured this concept".

“As you walk around the exhibition, you will be overwhelmed with colour, positivity and creativity as it becomes quite clear how these artworks can help improve a child’s mood. Each entry truly reflects what Operation Art is all about - cheering up children in hospital - and we are thrilled to see so many students helping their peers towards recovery,” she said.

The Children’s Hospital at Westmead’s Chief Executive, Michael Brydon, officially opened the exhibition last Saturday with the help of Niamh Bonnet from Blaxland High School. The event included family activities and performances by featured artists from Arts Alive Choir, NSW Public Schools Millennium Marching Band and the PULSE Public Schools Big Band.

Operation Art is made possible by the generous support of ANSTO and will be open daily from 9 September to 29 October, 10am to 4pm, at Amory Gallery in Sydney Olympic Park. Entry is free.