The Crown Sky Garden, on the 11th floor of the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, is a 5,000-square-foot area for play and contemplation and the second healing garden completed last year by Mikyoung Kim. Kim, a 44-year-old landscape architect, is regarded as an artful weaver of nature and sculpture. The Sky Garden features a bamboo grove and interactive furniture that emits sounds when an embedded brass hand is touched with a live one.
Project Ripple, Kim’s garden at Jackson South Community Hospital in Miami, Florida, opened in August. “When we look for a place to call home and we nurture a garden we call our own, we are looking for a place that’s restorative, that’s regenerative and that has a kind of humanity,” she told a reporter last week on the phone from her office in Boston.
Q. How do you define a healing garden?
A. It allows for us to reboot. I think that a lot of our public environments don’t really offer us that.
Q. Certainly not in hospitals.
A. Overall, a kind of stress management happens. It’s something we all know intuitively. We go to a place that’s quiet and inviting, and we can just feel our body relaxing. I think at the highest level, hospital administrators are really beginning to believe that design matters and they’re infusing a kind of humanity into these clinical environments.
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– Julie Lasky