Leslie Barron: Hall of Unity, A Ride with Rosie and Elephant

Published On 07/11/2011

 "Hall of Unity"

Location: Hall to Chapel
Underwriting Cost: $30,000


"A Ride with Rosie"

Location: 2nd Floor Waiting
Underwriting Cost: $7,500



Location: 2nd Floor Waiting
Underwriting Cost: $7,500

Memphis artist Leslie Barron learned to express her creativity through drawing and painting as a small child. Now, her contemporary folk art is part of the collection at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital. A collection Barron calls “child centered without being childish.”

Five paintings by Barron are part of the permanent collection including the “Hall of Unity,” a grouping of five paintings that represent Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu and Bah’ai houses of worship. The series was commissioned for the hallway that leads to the chapel on the first floor of the hospital.

The Le Bonheur art development committee approached Barron with the concept because of a series of folk church paintings previously created by Barron. They asked her to incorporate the four other faiths to create the “Hall of Unity.”

Barron said, “This was completely outside of my comfort zone. It was a huge job, but so much fun to figure out how I was going to represent each house of worship in my own style.”

She learned while there are only five Bah’ai temples in the world, and only one in the United States, they are unified by lush gardens and beautiful fountains. After looking at hundreds of mosques, Barron’s is an interpretation of one of the oldest mosques in the world. Because Hindu temples are so ornate, Barron picked a few key elements and created a scaled-down version. Barron found the synagogue the hardest to develop because the outside structures represent the time period in which they are built.

“I know that animals can help to heal, relieve stress and bring great joy. Maybe a painting can help children do that as well,” Barron said.

Being part of Le Bonheur’s thoughtful art collection was a lucky coincidence, Barron says. She happened to sit next to hospital president Meri Armour at a thank you dinner for a charity golf tournament Barron’s husband helped organize.

“It has been, by leaps and bounds, the most rewarding project I have ever been a part of as a professional artist,” Barron says of the Le Bonheur art development. “My hope is that while children and parents wait for an appointment, wait th

Barron specializes in paintings using mixed media including acrylic paint, oil based washes, pencil, wax, texture mediums and a collage of collected items on canvas or board. She received a Bachelor of Fine Art from the University of Memphis in 1995.rough surgery, have an extended stay at the hospital, or just have a meal in the cafeteria, that the art provides a fun, whimsical relief.”




If you would like to inquire about underwriting this or any of the other pieces in the Le Bonheur Children's Hospital Art Collection, please call the Le Bonheur Children's Hospital Foundation at 901-287-6308.