Local artists fill EPH Outpatient Infusion Center with healing beauty

Art Center of Estes Park Gallery Manager Lars Sage and artist Astrid Paustian pose in front of donated art in the EPH Outpatient Infusion Center. (Photo by Wendy Rigby/Estes Park Health)

For patients in Estes Park Health’s Outpatient Infusion Center, the road to recovery just got a little more scenic. More than 20 artists who live in and around the Estes Valley donated more than two dozen pieces of framed watercolors, oils, photographs, and pen and ink drawings to line the walls of this special patient care area.

Gallery Manager Lars Sage of the Art Center of Estes Park helped solicit the donations.

“I was looking for a variety of pieces of artwork,” Sage explained. “They are not always the same scenic view. Hopefully as the person sits in the chair, they can look at it and just feel comfortable in having something to look at and enjoy for the time they are there.”

The Outpatient Infusion Clinic at Estes Park Health provides a valuable service for patients needing chemotherapy, antibiotics, biologics, and other types of infusions. Patients also undergo therapeutic phlebotomies in this area.

The clinic partners with UCHealth for cancer care. Patients can be cared for locally instead of making a long drive to and from chemotherapy.

Astrid Paustian is an Artist Member of the Art Center of Estes Park. She donated a piece called “Sunset by the Lake.”

As a former nurse, she felt called to donate her work to Estes Park Health.

“Art certainly soothes my soul,” Paustian said. “The places I tend to paint are peaceful and uplifting. I don’t like super realistic, dramatic, sad art. There’s enough of that in the world. Personally, I just know that’s what art does for me. It can offer solace, comfort, excitement…all the good things in life.”

The local art gives a comforting feel to the spacious Outpatient Infusion Center room with its lovely windows and beautiful views of Lumpy Ridge and Mount Olympus.

Some patients visit this room monthly, weekly, or even daily for their treatments.

“I always look for opportunities to have the Art Center exposed in the community in different ways,” Sage added. “We have five rotating satellite exhibits up around town in Snowy Peaks Winery, VERT Coworking, US Bank, Bank of Estes Park and second floor lobby of Estes Park Health.”

However, these pieces were given to EPH permanently. Each one has a brass plate with the name of the piece of art and the name of the artist so that in the future, people can appreciate what generous local artists donated in 2023.

These pieces of art are establishing a sanctuary, providing patients with a place of comfort and inspiration on the journey to recovery. With titles like “Galaxy,” “Joyful Morning,” “Fall at Hallett Peak” and “Dancing Waters,” these creations help keep the room from having a sterile, impersonal feel.

Besides Paustian, other local artists who contributed their work to EPH include Laura Davis, Deborah Jansen, Bruce Boynton, Alan Robertson, Connie Schmidt, Chris Switzer, FI Rust, Andrea Gavel, Bo Cheatham, Nancy Dietz, Gretchen Acharya, Velina Davidson, Diana Wade, Linda Palmer, Anne Sneary, and Charlotte Lloyd.

To listen to a podcast about this project, go to https://blubrry.com/1471883/125096330/mountaintop-medicine-from-estes-park-health-local-artists-fill-eph-outpatient-infusion-center-with-healing-beauty/.