I SPY: Rutchick stands in front of the mural she painted on Bigelow 6.
Televisions, sneakers, giant lollipops and tennis racquets usually aren't found in trees. But those items can be found nestled in the leaves of a giant tree in a sunny park scene painted on the walls of the Conscious Sedation Room in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) on Bigelow 6. The mural was painted by local artist Elisabeth Rutchick, who found the opportunity to volunteer her creative talents through "a friend of a friend of an MGHer," according to Hilary D'Amato, MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC) Child Life specialist, who spearheaded the project.
"We are thrilled with the mural Elisabeth painted," says D'Amato, whose own creativity helped to devise the scene with the tree and its unusual items. "Elisabeth was extremely flexible and willing to incorporate my ideas even when they changed throughout the project. She understood that the mural needed to be interactive and not just decorative."
D'Amato explains that both parents and caregivers can use the mural to distract a nervous child by asking him or her to spot hidden items. A complete list of the objects to locate soon will be posted in the room.
Rutchick completed the project in only three weekends in February and March, donating her time and talent. MGHfC patient Sebastian Matia Coreas had seen the work in progress and noted that a skateboard was his favorite item in the tree, but he thought it could use some more detail. He suggested to Rutchick that she add a lightning bolt to the skateboard. She did, and it made Sebastian's day when he later saw the mural.