For Immediate Release: May 18, 2016
Who: Katherine Stanek, of West Deptford, NJ
What: Will complete the final stages of a commissioned concrete sculpture titled "Embrace"
When: Thursday, May 19 and Friday, May 20
Media should contact Jennifer Tornetta for specific times.
Where: AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center (ARMC) Mainland Campus
65 West Jimmie Leeds Road, Pomona, NJ; Celebration of Life Walk outside the hospital.
Details: The AtlantiCare Healing Arts Program commissioned artist Katherine Stanek, of West Deptford, NJ, to create a new concrete sculpture titled "Embrace." The approximately 1,800-pound sculpture is eight feet high, and the width at the widest part is 30 inches. Stanek is continuing work on the final stages of the piece onsite at the ARMC Mainland Campus.
The theme for the art is healing through nature. The artwork is funded through the AtlantiCare Healing Arts Program as part of its commitment to include regional art at its facilities to create a healing environment for patients, visitors and staff.
Stanek began the scaling of the piece at her studio September 2015. She started with armature construction, then did clay modeling and rubber mold construction. On May 11, she transferred the mold and additional materials for the piece to the AtlantiCare Hospice Celebration of Life Walk at ARMC and began the onsite work, which includes casting and surface modeling/finishing.
Over three days, Stanek prepared the steel reinforcements for casting, assembled the mold around the steel structure then mixed and poured concrete mixture into the mold. She then removed the mold to reveal the cast form. This includes the general forms and foundation colors. She will model surface detail directly over the casting onsite over a period of four days starting Thursday, May 19.
Because the proper water ratio is critical for a stable mixture, Stanek's onsite work is dependent on the weather. The design mix used for this sculpture is a proprietary mix that Stanek developed exclusively for the project to achieve the desired colors and effects.
Stanek says it was AtlantiCare's concepts of "unity" and "healing through nature" that inspired her project. Stanek says her concept for the project is "to create a pillar of strength that unifies the AtlantiCare community, the people it services and the environment that supports the same with sensitivity to the experiences of all." Emulating the trees preserved in the same space, the sculpture will evolve from the landscape to deliver a warm embrace.
Using faux bois techniques, she has anchored a concrete pillar to the ground with a footing for stability, which will then be transformed onsite into a tree that appears to be growing from the landscape. She chose the concrete medium to help the piece enrich, rather than compete, with its environment. She says the bark will appear to peel away from the concrete tree to reveal a carved figure. Two entities join together to become one, each guiding and following one another as they evolve, shedding one layer to reveal a solid and enlightened core.
"My intention is that the piece will have a calming expression as it supports the journey through a warm embrace," says Stanek. "The colors will be organic to integrate with the environment, yet vibrant enough to command attention. With a core larger than the surrounding trees it will stand out as if it has been growing from that space for many years."
About AtlantiCare's Healing Arts Program
AtlantiCare has made a commitment to integrating the arts into the care environment in all new buildings, in response to surveys that show the arts contribute to the healing process. Today AtlantiCare exhibits more than 1,700 pieces in its collection with more than 90 percent of the art represented by New Jersey-based artisans. To donate, or for more information about the program, visit www.atlanticare.org/healingarts.
AtlantiCare, a member of Geisinger Health System, is an integrated system of services designed to help people achieve optimal health. It includes AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center, AtlantiCare Health Engagement, the AtlantiCare Foundation, and AtlantiCare Health Services. Its more than 5,400 employees and more than 700 physicians serve the community in nearly 70 locations. A 2009 Malcolm Baldrige Award winner, AtlantiCare was also included in Modern Healthcare's Best Places to Work in Healthcare in 2010. ARMC became the 105th hospital in the nation to attain status as a Magnet™ designated hospital in March of 2004 and was redesignated a Magnet™ hospital in 2008 and 2013.