In May 2008, RxART installed two original works by Will Cotton in the newly constructed Kay Kafe at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. All researchers, doctors, nurses, and staff eat together in this new cafeteria with St. Jude patients, families, and visitors on a daily basis in order to humanize the facility and to normalize the children’s experience.
Will Cotton’s paintings and drawings commonly portray confections, superbly drafted and sumptuously painted in a realistic style. “I’m interested in depicting an imagined utopia, a place that’s only about pleasure,” says Cotton. He creates all the edible confections himself and then paints the finished scene on canvas. Cotton’s 80″ x 120″ paintings in Kay Kafe depict gingerbread houses, one in sunlight and one in snow and fog. In November 2007, Cotton invited a young St. Jude cancer survivor and her family to his studio to decorate the gingerbread houses that he modeled for these paintings at St. Jude.
This project is made possible by generous donations from Shu Uemura, Christy Walton, Leonard Wagner Charitable Trust, and Fifth Floor Foundation.