Behind the Scenes: Who Paints Those Beautiful Murals at Mission Children’s Hospital?

By Amber Abunassar

Joy Hof has a passion for art and loves to share that talent with the community, particularly kids who can benefit from its beauty.

Hof is a muralist for Mission Children’s Hospital, filling the walls with colorful landscapes and playful animals to promote happiness and healing. “It actually helps the patients when they come into that room,” Hof said. “I, as an artist, am taking that white sterile space and transforming it into an environment that is engaging and takes the child and the family members that are in there away from their fears and anxieties to just a place of comfort and harmony with all the colors.”

Mission Health hired Hof to paint the treatment room, which shows large-scale landscape that has taken her several months to complete. She dedicated all of her working hours to the project.

Hof, a graduate of UNC Asheville, enjoys hiding objects in the murals, and the wall includes raccoons, butterflies, squirrels, kites and ice-cream cones for patients to search for as a distraction while they are being treated. It is a way to reduce anxiety and a conversation starter for the patients and nurses — instead of talking about the pain of the treatments they can engage in the murals.

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