Keep Them Well
Harborview Medical Center
A chorus of voices speaks through multi-lingual quotes in etched glass windows that tie together two wings of the hospital.
Portland-based artist Tad Savinar created this integrated “zipper” wall to knit together Harborview’s old East Hospital Wing with the West Hospital Wing addition.The etched glass features 11 quotes from patients, families, and staff—permanent sentiments from those receiving and giving care at the hospital. While creating the piece, Savinar collected stories and quotes by placing cards on the food trays distributed throughout the hospital, which he provided in Vietnamese, Spanish, Somali, and English. Each quote appears in its own unique color, changing with the light throughout the day.
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“I want the building to talk,” Savinar says. “The wall is a chorus of voices.”
Images of gold leaves, a diamond, and birds in flight animate the text. The diamond represents brilliance and rarity and the gold leaves look like stars when someone peers through the wall into the night sky. Close inspection reveals a flaw in the diamond, put there by the artist to remind viewers that life is special, but not perfect.
About the Location
Harborview Medical Center For more than a century, Harborview Medical Center has functioned as a unique community and regional resource. It is a county hospital, a teaching and research institution, a regional trauma and burn center, and the primary health care provider for many low-income and disenfranchised people in the community. Harborview embraces its mission of treating everybody,…
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