Regional Hospice, in partnership with OATS (Older Adults Technology Services) and Finale Consulting, enabled Nancy Stevenson to experience the first-ever robotic tour of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City – all from the comfort of her hospice bed. Nancy is an artist and illustrator who had lived in the city before her progressing cancer led her to choose hospice care from the Center for Comfort Care & Healing.
When Stevenson, who has been sharing her hospice experience on her blog hopeandcourage.com, expressed her wish to view the Human Interest: Portraits from the Whitney’s Collection, Regional Hospice worked to make that a reality. The Whitney, whose mission is to feature American artists through an eclectic array of collections, graciously accommodated the request on a day when the museum was closed to the public.
In anticipation of the event, Nancy emailed Regional Hospice staff to express her gratitude. “I’m looking forward to my personal tour of the Whitney Portrait Show – very exciting! It’s a miracle you could set this up and I feel I’ve won a Make a Wish moment.”
The opportunity was so meaningful to Stevenson because, as she wrote, “I have always been a figurative painter. I did my undergraduate work at Syracuse University with one of the world’s most foremost figurative portrait painters, Jerome Witkin. And, I also studied with masters at The Art Student’s League in NYC.”
The first-of-its-kind tour of the Whitney utilized a telepresence robot connected to software on Nancy’s laptop which allowed her to virtually explore the museum. An educator from the museum was on hand for questions, allowing Stevenson to be fully immersed in the experience. In addition, Nancy was supported by her Social Worker, Amy Bauer.
“This is an amazing opportunity and we are very grateful to the Whitney Museum and all of the members of the OATS team and Finale Consulting who made this wonderful event possible for Nancy. She is a special person whose love of creating and sharing artwork has truly brightened our Center,” expressed Cynthia Emiry Roy, President & CEO for Regional Hospice.
Following are some of Nancy Stevenson’s portraits: