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Sprouts is a series of perforated, curvilinear sculptures that reference the form of a plant shoot or sprout, but at a monumental scale. The field of sculptures creates an abstract yet referential environment that invites people to interact with the piece by moving in and around it. Sprouts’ gently curving forms create a calm serene environment that can be explored without eliciting a strong sense of play. The subtle perforation is made up of different sized circles, rotated and skewed slightly to provide the illusion of small water droplets hitting the surfaces. Overall, visitors to the piece are immersed in a strange yet wondrous world that invites them to use their imagination.

Sprouts has many opportunities for interpretation by the diverse groups of people that visit the Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Having an artwork that can be interpreted differently by visitors allows it to be relatable yet creates a unique experience for each person. The concept for Sprouts draws from many sources. The sculpture is meant to evoke the sense of an oasis—one of the hospital’s governing metaphors—by creating an isolated area of abstract vegetation that provides a respite for people visiting the hospital. Sprouts also references the early period of growth in the life of a plant as seeds grow upward into shoots. The sculpture alludes to spring and the sense of hope for growth and change. These metaphors easily extend to the idea of children being in an early period of growth and continuously developing.




Phoenix Children's Hospital, Phoenix, AZ


13' x 9' x 25'


stainless steel

Commissioning Agency: 

Phoenix Children's Hospital


Joe O'Connell


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