Joy Garden

Collaboration for positive action — Morag demonstates how artists and brands can work together to instigate change in the public realm

Morag's first project at Sheffield Children’s Hospital — which saw four designs across forty-six en-suite bedrooms, secured her close connection and commitment to the hospital, its patients and its staff and in-turn provided the initial inspiration for her most personal project to date, the Joy Garden. After a site-visit with Cat Powell, former Head of The Children’s Hospital Charity’s arts programme, Artfelt, they both knew the value of the underused outside courtyard space, and the difference it could make to children, families, and staff. Understanding the difficulty of securing funding projects for hospitals, Morag personally approached method, creators of future friendly cleaning and personal care products, who she had been working with on a limited edition product range.

This project, without having to only rely on charity and philanthropy, signifies hope in a certain kind of activism, where artists and brands can work proactively together to catalyse change and bring real necessary good into the public realm.

… “I know how much outside space makes a difference to mood when you are confined to one space. Some of the children and families stay in the hospital for extended periods of time and need to get outside and feel the sun on their faces. We’ve all realised the value of outside spaces and interacting with each other over the last couple of years. And although aesthetics are secondary to treatment in hospital, it’s obvious that they bring much needed value and support to the human experience. Hopefully this garden will bring some joy when patients, families and staff need it most.” Morag Myerscough

‘Fragrance and colour workshop sessions’ were held by Morag at the hospital with families, staff, and a fragrance expert from method. A further aspect of collaboration can be seen in the garden’s geometrical colour-infused floor patterns, originally designed for another public artwork initiative in London, which when cancelled enabled the artist to repurpose them for use within the hospital garden. It was important to Morag to work with local craftspeople to finalise the build, she worked with Sheffield fabricator Design Workshop Ltd for the main structure of the Joy Garden, while the panels were painted by Morag in her studio using Yes Colours who gifted the paint to the project.

“I’m delighted to bring to completion the project Morag and I envisioned so many years ago. The Joy Garden completes a journey through our building; from an enticing entrance, up to our unique bedrooms, and now a special outdoor space that brings everyone together. It’s a privilege to work with Morag, who so completely understands the difference art can bring to healthcare environments and has a fabulous talent for making spaces which enrich people’s lives. This project couldn’t have happened without her passion and the support of a company like Method and all the amazing traders that pulled together to create such a wonderful result for so many patients, families, and staff.” Cat Powell, Former Head of Artfelt

“The new Joy Garden is amazing – Morag has just brought such life and colour into the space. I love it and I know that our families, our colleagues, and our patients will find it fabulous as well. Access to outdoor space and fresh air can be so important for our wellbeing, we’ve got patients who have long stays with us and others that attend our Outpatients Department regularly, so having this new vibrant space will be of huge benefit to them.” Ruth Brown, Chief Executive at Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust

The Joy Garden underpins the importance of brands working together with artists to do good for those in need.

Artfelt Children's Charity
Sheffield Children's Hospital

Sheffield Children's Hospital

Atoll Structure
Morag Myerscough 

Project supported by Method Products

YesColours gifted the paints

Coloured exterior flooring was gifted.
Installation and production by Geveko Markings

Pavilion built by Design Workshop Ltd

Gareth Gardner

Permanent Installation

Completion date
Summer 2022

Read More