Hospital’s new murals showcase local history

NYC Health + Hospitals/South Brooklyn Health unveiled two murals dedicated to Coney Island’s history Oct. 25.

“Together We Heal,” by Kristy McCarthy, was created as part of the Community Mural Project, which is run by the health system’s arts in medicine department and allows hospital staff to collaborate with neighbors to show local pride through the arts.

Patients, staff and community members influenced the work through a series of focus groups and took part in a “paint party.”

“With these murals, I hoped to convey that sense of unity and togetherness, while also celebrating South Brooklyn’s rich history and culture,” McCarthy said. “Coming to the hospital can be a scary and upsetting experience for many, but my hope is that these artworks can bring some comfort, inspiration or even delight to patients and families visiting the ER.”

The mural in the adult emergency department celebrates Coney Island’s rich history.Photos courtesy of NYC Health + Hospitals/South Brooklyn Health

A two-sided mural in the adult emergency department’s waiting room shows rabbits, which originally inhabited the area; amusement rides, and children building sandcastles. It also pays homage to the hospital’s origins as a beachfront first aid station – the Hammett Pavilion, which is to be demolished this year – and to the newly built Ruth Bader Ginsburg Hospital.

The second mural, in the pediatric emergency department’s waiting room, pays tribute to the New York Aquarium and shows a mermaid and child in an underwater realm.

“Artist Kristy McCarthy’s thoughtful inclusion of the beautiful imagery and history that make up our South Brooklyn community is evident in the final version,” said Larissa Trinder, assistant vice president of arts in medicine.

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