You might not think of art when you think of a hospital, but Oro Valley Hospital northwest of Tucson is being recognized for its commitment to buying and exhibiting dozens of paintings, sculptures and other cultural expressions.
The Tucson Pima Arts Council annually honors individuals or groups who contribute to the local arts scene with "Lumie" awards.
This year, Oro Valley Hospital takes the honors in the category of Public Art Partner.
CEO Jae Dale says the hospital has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on artwork for the seven-year old facility.
It's not a museum, but there is still plenty of room for exhibits in air-conditioned comfort for patients, visitors and staff members.
Right now, the permanent collection at the medical facility consists of more than 50 original pieces that have been purchased from artists. They can be seen inside and outside the hospital.
"It's a place where we can merge art with technology," Dale says. "We have a lot of high technology there, tens of millions of dollars of equipment, but it's nice to have that softer side of art. And it helps, I think, to have a real calming influence on both visitors as well as patients."
Oro Valley Hospital has 144 licensed beds and has a staff of more than 500 employees.
Dale says it provides multiple programs and services to the community, and is the first hospital in the Tucson area to perform precision robotic partial knee resurfacing.