Gifts of Art

Programs Exhibits Performances
& Events
Make a Gift



Gifts of Art's nine galleries are viewed by approximately 10,000 people each day. This makes our galleries some of the most widely visited indoor, non-museum exhibit spaces in Michigan.

The artwork on display is richly diverse in style, medium, form and subject, and provides an ever-changing sampling of the best art the region has to offer. View our current exhibits online. For a quick reference for exhibit information, including gallery locations and hours, please go to our printable Exhibit Schedule Card. There is also a short video about Gifts of Art's Exhibition Program.
Call for Exhibits
Gifts of Art holds an annual Call for Exhibits to select artwork for the galleries. In addition, Gifts of Art hosts an annual Employee Art Exhibition that offers health system faculty and staff an opportunity to display their creative works.

How to purchase art: To purchase a piece of art on exhibit with Gifts of Art, please call 734.936.ARTS (2787).

Top of page


Pre-pandemic, Gifts of Art presented weekly free in-person public performances in music, theater and dance. Hospital audiences could expect to see anything from a jazz ensemble to West African dance. Performers included local, regional and international artists who presented an array of musical styles. Summer events took place in the hospital courtyard, weather permitting.

In accordance with Covid-19 guidelines, in-person concerts have temporarily been suspended. Please check our Performances page for live stream and featured concerts, and our Resources page for more listening opportunities.

If you would like information about performing with Gifts of Art, please email or call Carrie McClintock, 734.936.7960.

Top of page


Art CartThe Art Cart program is a lending library of framed poster art. Volunteers take colorful carts of framed posters to the patient floors in the University Hospital and offer patients a selection of artwork to display in their rooms. The simple choice of artwork is one way we try to give patients a sense of control at a time when so much is decided for them. Many times these images have a profound affect on patients and become valued "companions" in their hospital experiences.

To request a new Art Cart poster for your room, call 734-936-ARTS (2787) or email Gifts of Art.

Top of page


Restorative gardens have had a presence in hospitals since the Middle Ages. Michigan Medicine is pleased to continue this tradition of hospitality with the FRIENDS Meditation Garden. This garden was specifically designed to provide an outdoor space within the medical center of comfort and respite for patients, visitors and staff.

Internationally recognized landscape architect James van Sweden, of Oehme, van Sweden & Associates, Inc ., was instrumental in designing the garden. Van Sweden is a graduate of the U-M School of Architecture, and he worked the U-M Program in Landscape Architecture with support from the FRIENDS and Gifts of Art at Michigan Medicine to make the garden a reality. It is located on the northeast side of the courtyard, adjacent to the Towsley building. Map to garden.

Across the street from C.S. Mott Children's & Von Voitlanger Women's Hospitals is the University of Michigan Nichols Arboretum (locally known as the Arb) at 1610 Washington Heights, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Pedestrians from the U-M Hospital can reach the entrance by using the sidewalks along East Medical Center Drive. Map to the Arb.

As you explore, you’ll find one of the richest landscapes in the region, as well as a complex glacial topography that presents vast panoramas, broad valleys, intimate dales and glens as well as the Huron river. Year-round, the Arb is a feast for the senses. For more information, visit the Nichols Arboretum website or call 734-647-7600.

Top of page


Talented volunteer musicians, on the baby grand piano in our Main Lobby and in other waiting areas, provide a pleasant diversion during difficult times for patients, families and staff.

Top of page


Bedside MusicCertified Music Practitioners® provide free therapeutic live music in most adult patient units. The music has an almost immediate stress-reducing and calming effect on patients. Staff members report that music changes the whole tenor of the unit and gives them a brief respite, something that can be quite rare in their busy days.

For a sample of what Bedside Music has to offer, you can watch a video about the program, a story about a special patient, and listen or share favorite songs. You can listen to relaxing lullabies here.

To request a free in-person or Zoom visit by a Certified Music Practitioner® Monday-Friday, call 734-936-9431 ext. 1, email, or request Bedside Music on MiChart.

Top of page


Bedside Art kitsGifts of Art artists-in-residence visit adult patients and their guests with FREE art making projects. A visit by an artist-in-residence is an opportunity to try something new, discuss art, or simply have fun!

Choose from a variety of diverse art kits with materials and designs from around the world. Art kits include journals, beaded bracelets, paper folding, greeting cards, drawing and more.

To see what Bedside Art has to offer, you can watch a video and try the Hamsa Hands kit now with your own art supplies.

Our newest offerings are Comfort Legacy Kits for families and guests to assist with delicate and sacred end-of-life moments. The kits help to preserve precious memories of loved ones in the time of transition. The descriptive video below offers more information about all five kits.

The process of making or experiencing art promotes health and well-being by providing creative distraction, stress, anxiety relief, human connection, and other benefits.

To request a free in-person or Zoom visit by an artist-in-residence Monday-Thursday, call 734-936-9431 ext. 2, email, or request Bedside Art on MiChart.

In order to meet all of our many requests, patients may receive a total of two coloring books and up to two art kits per week, but you may download as many coloring pages as you'd like.

Top of page


Bedside Art kitsA visit by a Gifts of Art writer-in-residence is a chance for patients to record a personal story for someone special in their lives. Participants receive their audio story free of charge. The recordings are considered confidential and belong to participants to share with anyone they wish.

To request a free in-person or Zoom visit by our writer-in-residence, call 734-936-9431 ext. 1 and request Story Studio, or send an email to Sam Vandiver.

In addition to patients, Story Studio is also available for Michigan Medicine faculty, staff and learners.

Top of page


LSO The Life Sciences Orchestra is the symphonic orchestra for members of the medical and life sciences community at the University of Michigan. The orchestra was founded to provide a performance outlet for faculty, staff and students in these disciplines while simultaneously building a sense of community and sustaining the creative spirit. The LSO presents two free public concerts each year, but in accordance with Covid-19 guidelines, orchestra concerts will not be held this season. Visit LSO Facebook for the latest updates. Concert and rehearsal footage as well as interviews with musicians are in the video below:

Top of page


Gifts of Art collaborates with university and community artists in the creation of participatory arts projects with our patients and staff. The Dragon of Wishes Hopes and Dreams, was a collaboration with Art and Design Associate Professor Anne Mondro and her students from the class Retaining Identity: The Role of Creative Work within the Healthcare Setting. The dragon was designed by artist Katy Bergman Cassell, funded by a FIGS grant, and brought about by participants creating messages in words and pictures on paper fans - more than 1,700 in all - which were then folded to become the scales adorning the Dragon. Spanning more than 16 feet, this magnificent dragon was dedicated to the patients, visitors, faculty and staff of Michigan Medicine to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers. It is located outside the University Hospital Main Lobby, Floor 1. View more photos of the project.


Art Under the Microscope

Radiance Tapestry

Re-Purposed Treasures

Top of page

Facebook Gifts of Art
YouTube YouTube


Art Cart

Bedside Music Program

Bedside Art Program

Story Studio

Art Galleries

FRIENDS Meditation Garden & Arb

Hospital-Wide Art Projects

Life Sciences Orchestra

Music While You Wait

Weekly Public Performances


U-M Medical School
| Hospitals & Health Centers | U-M | TEXT-ONLY

University of Michigan Health System
1500 E. Medical Center Drive  Ann Arbor, MI 48109   734-936-4000
(c) copyright Regents of the University of Michigan
Template developed & maintained by: Public Relations & Marketing Communications
Contact UMHS

The University of Michigan Health System web site does not provide specific medical advice and does not endorse any medical or professional service obtained through information provided on this site or any links to this site.
Complete disclaimer and Privacy Statement


Health Topics A-Z

For Patients & Families

For Health Professionals

Search Tools & Index