A Playful Mural Designed for a Pediatric Unit

handsculpted, sgraffito-carved, ceramic wall art by Natalie Blake

 Ceramic Wall Art Mural Inspired by our Local Roots This spring we were asked to create an original wall tile mural to be installed in the Yale-New Haven Hospital’s Pediatric Specialty Center.  The art committee wanted a piece that would include themes of travel and literature that would resonate with children.  We love this type of project where we can really be creative.  Some great design ideas came out of our collaboration with the art committee.  For example using books as wings.  You can see the results below:flying books and books as handgliders!     Once the committee told us to locate the scene in New England we really got creative!  We incorporated images that we see out our window everyday: rolling hills, a river and a train (the Amtrak line runs right along the Connecticut River, through Brattleboro).  We love biking and kayaking so we included these modes of travel too. Our signature, sgraffito carving style brings a lot of movement to the  flowing river and breezy skies; the whole piece feels animated. Working on this wall art mural felt especially personal for Cynthia (Designer at Natalie Blake Studios). “As I biked to work I kept noticing details in… Read More »

Ceramic Wall Art Tile Installed in New Kentucky Hospital

handmade, ceramic wall art tile by Natalie Blake

Nature-based designs and soothing colors: these were the criteria that the art committee of the new Owensboro Health Regional Hospital (Owensboro, KY) used to select art for the new hospital.   Natalie Blake Studios was honored to create ceramic wall art tile for the hospital. In developing guidelines for artwork, the committee used research about art in healthcare.  “The purpose of the artwork is to provide positive distractions to help patients leave the stress of the moment and respond better to treatment, ” said Barbara Harriman, President / Creative Director of Distinctive Art Source and an art advisor working with the committee.         “Putting the right art in place supports patient care, and can even lead to shorter hospital stays,” she says.  “Studies indicate that patients need less medication and exhibit more positive attitudes when exposed to artwork featur­ing natural surroundings,” she notes. “We want to create an experience to keep patients close to nature and support the architectural serenity designed into the space.” Harriman commissioned three ceramic wall tile triptychs from Natalie Blake Studios  for the hospital’s 5th floor family area. Each grouping of 3 tiles were to be installed in a wooden, recessed panel.  The ceramic art discs are each… Read More »

Nature-based art promotes healing

handmade, sgraffito-carved ceramic wall tile by Natalie Blake Studios

 Natalie Blake Studios’ work profiled in Healthcare Design Magazine   In  September we completed this Tree of Life mural for Skyline Art Services.  The piece was installed in the Fort  Belvoir Community Hospital in Virginia.  We are honored that our work was selected for this prestigious hospital, which is the first of a new generation of world-class military medical facilities.  We have known for some time that our work fills a niche for art in healthcare settings, as the healthcare industry moves towards evidence-based design (EBD).   Incorporating the visual arts in the healthcare environment is a fundamental component of EBD, with proven benefits for patients, family and staff, translating into measurable outcomes in health, well-being, and cost of care. (see our recent blogpost on this topic). Healthcare Design Magazine recently published a case study of the art at Fort Belvoir.  According to the article, “HDR established a design imperative to bring the outdoors in, and so provided the common areas with access to daylight as well as views to the forests and river beyond the site and to the campus grounds and gardens. Both the abundance of external views and the nature-based motifs of each pavilion are key components… Read More »

Art in Healthcare: A Case Study

Methodist Hospital of Southern California

Barbara Markoff, a corporate art consultant for 31 years, owns Artrageous!, an art consultancy  based in San Diego, CA.  Barbara has placed Natalie’s art tile in several healthcare facilities.  She wrote the following case study for us to highlight how she chose Natalie’s work for a recent healthcare project.   As an art consultant I am often presented with challenging situations where art is required to hang. This project, the new North Tower at Methodist Hospital of Southern California, in Arcadia, CA was new construction.  The six story building is the newest addition to the hospital’s campus which originally opened in 1957.  The state of the art facility houses the Hollfeld Emergency Care Center on the first floor, a 20 bed ICU unit on the 2nd floor, 40 medical/surgical beds on the 3rd, 4th, and 5th floors and a cafeteria in the basement area.     The challenge for this project was finding an artist who could create unique, theme-specific artwork for a circular recessed wall in a hospital setting.  My client was looking for a series of tiles that would convey an ocean theme and fit into a circular space.  For this project I needed to find artwork that was… Read More »

Art for Healthcare Installations

handmade, sgraffito-carved, ceramic wall discs by Natalie Blake

Healthcare Installations are our specialty “Natalie Blake Studios’ natural themes, which evoke the restorative properties of balance and harmony, have proven to be therapeutic to patients.” Carla Santia, Art Consultant for Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, MA   “The craftsmanship is top notch.  Not only are Natalie’s designs unique and gorgeous, she will custom-create designs to your own specifications.  Her attention to detail is extraordinary.  Her staff is eager to please and easy to work with.  It is a winning combination of excellent product and great customer service.” Barbara Markoff, Art Consultant, Artrageous!   In 2006 Natalie Blake Studios began creating handmade, ceramic, nature-based design tiles, responding to an increased demand for art installations in health care facilities and marking a turning point for the studio toward more meaning-based work. Our designs incorporate universally-recognizable natural features: trees, flowers, botanical elements, which symbolize abundance, rejuvenation and growth. The images are safe, welcoming and are designed to create a more positive, peaceful environment.  We are honored to join more and more healthcare institutions in their groundbreaking missions to further serve patients by incorporating art into their health care setting. Our staff has worked with design teams to create innovative, lasting artwork in cancer research… Read More »

Botanical, glazed in creme

handmade, ceramic wall art tile by Natalie Blake Studios

This mural, 48″ x 48″, glazed in creme, was commissioned by Skyline Art Services for a children’s waiting room for Memorial Hermann Texas Medical Center, Houston, TX.  They chose the piece for its soothing, feminine nature.  The subtle, creme color balanced well with the other artwork in the area.  Because it’s in a children’s waiting area, the client requested that the tiles be less undulated than typical because they didn’t want any little hands poking their way behind the tiles.  The mural is the only dimensional piece in the area    

New Installation of Ceramic Art Discs

handmade, sgraffito-carved, ceramic wall discs by Natalie Blake

  These ceramic wall discs were commissioned by Art 3 Gallery, Manchester, NH for an outpatient surgery center north of Boston, MA. We worked with the art consultant to choose tile sizes and colors, using her direction on design and layout.   Here’s a closeup of one of the discs:   Click on the image to watch a short video of our process:  

New Healthcare Installation

handmade, ceramic wall art tile by Natalie Blake Studios

Thanks to Barbara Markoff, corporate art consultant, Artrageous! San Diego, CA for these photos. She commissioned these wall tiles for a waiting area in a hospital.  We worked closed with Barbara to get the right designs and colors for the space.  Each mural is 48″ wide x 24″ high.                                

Three beautiful abstract murals

handmade, sgraffito-carved, ceramic wall tile by Natalie Blake Studios

These three murals were commissioned by an art consultant for a hospital installation.  The tiles are each 12″ x 12″. The glazes she chose are: Moss, Apricot, Honey, Blue, Turquoise, Cashew    

New piece for healthcare installation

handmade, ceramic wall art and backsplash tile by Natalie Blake Studios

This piece was commissioned for a hospital lobby. The piece measures 36″ wide by 24″ high.  It is glazed in Robin’s Egg, Jade, and Honey, with a touch of Adobe on the center of the flower.   We think it would also make a beautiful backsplash!