Artwork Spotlight: Marthe Armitage

Our art and design programme aims to improve patient experience in a hospital environment, which can be seen as anxiety and stress-inducing. The artwork in our hospital sites remains on permanent display, and we hope that our existing interventions at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital and West Middlesex University Hospital continue to promote healing and positivity for patients and staff.

Willow (light blue); Willow (dark blue)
Bamboo (white on gold); Bamboo (gold on white)

The child of Dutch parents, Marthe Armitage was born in England in 1930. While in her teens, she studied fine art at Chelsea School of Art. After graduating, marriage and motherhood left little time for commitment to a creative career. This came later in life, with her children having grown up, allowing her to focus on her other love: art.

As a young mother, Marthe lived in India for two years, where her architect husband was designing a hospital. Watching village craftsmen at a local bazaar print patterns onto fabric, using simple wood blocks, was an experience which was to lead her to the idea of designing and printing wallpapers, using the technique of linocut.

Today, Marthe Armitage is world-famous in the field of wallpaper design, assisted by her 100-year old hand-operated offset lithographic press at her studio in Chiswick.

Marthe’s work can be found on the First Floor of West Middlesex University Hospital in the cath lab.

Click here for more information about our extensive hospital art collection.