Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at
Inova Schar Cancer Institute
New space, same mission.
The Inova Schar Cancer Institute is home to the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery's second gallery space, and shares the mission to feature contemporary artists that address a diversity of significant themes, including spirituality, social change, multiculturalism, health, environmentalism, and community.
Inova Schar is also home to the Arts & Healing Program, a collaboration with the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts, that uses art in its many forms to help support people in treatment and recovery and their loved ones.
The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Inova Schar Cancer Institute is currently showing a selection of Gretchen Feldman’s rich and vibrant paintings, which became a tool for her own healing after she was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer at age 72. While Gretchen is no longer with us, her life’s work carries on through the healing power of her art and her story.
Gretchen Feldman enjoyed a robust professional and family life with her husband Sam and their two daughters Leigh and Dene. Known for her intellect, as well as her whimsy and wonderful sense of humor, Gretchen’s passion for art history and textiles permeated her life. Gretchen worked professionally in the restoration of textiles for museums in Baltimore, but she always found time to design and make clothes for her children.
In the midst of their productive lives, Gretchen and Sam decided to relocate to Martha's Vineyard, MA. The lush landscape and the majestic ocean views motivated her transition into a new adventure of painting and gardening. This change created an artistic explosion of color and light. Gretchen visited the studio for hours at a time only leaving to “come up for air”. Gretchen generated hundreds of vibrantly colored works - watercolors, gouache and mixed media - in numerous styles, paralleling her desire to explore her craft.
At the age of 72, Gretchen was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer. In the wake of this painful and challenging news, Gretchen's artistic process helped her to navigate through the intense challenge of cancer. Her artwork - initially an expression of external love and nature - morphed into an internal examination of her journey. Gretchen is no longer with us, but we are fortunate to have her life’s work carry on.
“SHE WAS A WARM BLANKET AROUND OUR HEART” -Sam Feldman
This exhibit is in collaboration with Smtih Center for Healing and the Arts, The American Visionary Art Museum and the National Widowers Organization and with support from the Feldman Family Foundation.
Gallery Hours: Monday - Friday 9:00am - 5:00pm