A piece of artwork by renowned artist Damien Hirst has been gifted to fifty hospital trusts across the UK, including Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The work, ‘Butterfly Rainbow’, is made up of images coloured butterfly wings, one of the artist’s best-known motifs, designed to form a rainbow.

Hirst, who won the Turner Prize in 1995, created the original piece in May 2020 to show support for frontline health staff tackling the coronavirus pandemic.

Profits from the sales of limited edition prints were donated to NHS Charities Together, the organisation that represents and supports the official NHS charities, like ours, working across the UK.

Damien Hirst said: “I wanted to do something to support the many people who are risking their lives to help those in need during this time of crisis. The rainbow is a sign of hope and I’m so pleased to have released these prints to help fund the brilliant work being done by NHS staff across the country.”

Ruth Charity, arts coordinator at the OUH Trust and a member of the Oxford Hospitals Charity team said:

“It’s a really inspirational and beautiful piece that generates a feeling of hope and positivity in these difficult times. We are absolutely delighted to have this wonderful artwork and can’t wait for staff to be able to see it.

“We want all our staff to be able to enjoy this piece, which  will initially be installed at the John Radcliffe Hospital before visiting the Churchill, NOC and Horton hospitals.

“Bringing the arts and music into our hospitals has never been more important as they have a power to engage and support both staff and patient wellbeing.

“Oxford Hospitals Charity has a well established programme called artlink – which organises art exhibitions, as well as craft activities and music for patients on the wards – now being done virtually. We are delighted to be able to bring this beautiful piece of work into our hospitals and hope staff and visitors enjoy it.”

If you would like to know about how the arts are used to make a difference for patients and staff please visit www.hospitalcharity.co.uk/arts  and www.ouh.nhs.uk/artlink

If you would like to donate to help us fund music and arts to lift the spirits of patients just mention artlink on the donation reason.