Client: Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center
Location: Downey, CA, United States
Completion date: 2022
Artwork budget: $450,000
Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center
WRAPPED IN SUNBEAMS a public meeting space created for Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center which treats individuals recovering from acute physical traumas directly limiting their mobility. It balances the Center’s historical farming identity with its contemporary contributions to rehabilitation medicine. The iconic physical form stems from wooden barns, when Rancho was a citrus farm, however the roof and walls are made of color-transforming dichroic glass. Healing, movement, and transformation are key goals of Rancho Los Amigos. The softly changing pastel colors makes WRAPPED IN SUNBEAMS an uplifting landmark throughout the day that feels healing to be in its presence.
The design of the public sculpture is a balance of the Center’s historical farming identity and its contemporary contributions to the field of rehabilitation medicine over the last 100 years.
Through countless interviews with patients and staff the aim of the new public space is to make a quiet, reflective, and aspirational piece of art that could “let your mind be at ease for a minute”.
WRAPPED IN SUNBEAMS is a balance of Rancho’s farming history and its contemporary cutting edge practices. The iconic physical form stems from the wooden barns that were used when the property was a citrus farm, however the gabled ends of this barn are removed and the roof and walls are made of color-transforming dichroic glass. This dichroic glass allows the barn to be a welcoming light-filled destination for residents and their families to meet, and at the same time be a visually dynamic landmark on campus with colors and shadows shifting throughout the day providing a sense of movement and transformation. The weather vane on top of the structure is in the shape of an orange with a green stem and two leaves.
Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center was founded in 1888 to serve farming families who could not afford medical services (original name "The County Poor Farm") By 1922 the facility had fully transitioned from a poor farm to a medical facility although farming operations would continue on the grounds Currently, Rancho Los Amigos is now ranked among America's best hospitals in rehabilitation medicine and has pioneered numerous medical innovations and patented inventions that have transformed the field. WRAPPED IN SUNBEAMS has brought color, lightness, and healing energy to the lives of those going through extreme physical and mentally transformations at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center. It is an uplifting space that will be etched in people's hearts and minds while on their path to recovery, full of memories shared with friends and family who visit. Winning the Dezeen Award would acknowledge the investment of time working with a marginalized community to blend art, architecture, community input and history into a lasting experience for those who are searching for the strength to recover and heal.