A dozen brightly coloured wooden butterflies are hanging around the Showcase Gallery this month for Hospice Awareness Month.
The paintings, done by over a dozen members of the Cariboo Artists’ Guild, are intended to represent hospices around the world, including the 100 Mile District Hospice Palliative Care Society. Butterflies are seen as an enduring symbol of not only life and change but the beauty and fragility of life.
The butterflies were a joint project involving Hospice and the artists over the past several months. While not all of the 42 butterflies are complete, the majority are now on display.
The project came about as a way to honour those who had supported the creation of the two palliative care suites at 100 Mile District General Hospital with donations of $500 or more. Hospice executive director Tracy Haddow said the butterflies will be hung throughout the new wing with a plaque below recognizing the donor and artist by name.
“It’s really cool because the artists’ work will have a wonderful, beautiful home,” she said, where it will be appreciated.
Haddow sought the help of artists Penny Bailey and Bobbie Crane, to organize and recruit other artists. Bailey said she was happy to help out with this project, especially because each artist could interpret the project the way they wished.
“I did three. My last one I just went all out, I did my zen-tangle style drawing. It’s a combination of relaxing, doodling and a pattern that you repeat. It’s a kind of methodic type of art where you chill and sketch,” Bailey said, adding she took a more traditional approach with the other two.
Bailey said there’s a diverse range of painting styles on display, from realistic depictions of monarch butterflies to fanciful vibrant designs. There were even two mosaic butterflies produced, Bailey said, adding she was particularly impressed by the one created by Tracy McAvity.
Supporting the work Hospice does is important to Bailey, as she herself has visited Hospice in the past. She said they do a great job of making both the patient and family feel comfortable and welcome during the most difficult of times.
Haddow encourages everyone to view the art this month as once it’s in the hospital it won’t be as accessible. For Hospice Awareness Month she also encourages the community to reach out to them and learn more about what they do.
“I am so excited to start to see the end of the palliative care project. It’s been a long project and because of COVID things are stretched out a lot longer, we were thrilled and impressed with everyone who got involved.”