Art Professor Selected for San Antonio Hospital Project

Victoria Suescum, ACC associate professor of art, has been awarded a commission from San Antonio’s University Health System for a wall painting to be featured in a new building on the system’s Robert B. Green Hospital campus.

The 4-by-10-foot painting on metal will hang in a patient waiting area of the hospital’s Clinical Services building. The piece will be installed in November 2012.

“It’s exciting to be involved in the healing process,” Suescum says. “It is a project I feel suited for. It not only is an expression of my painting style, but also my values.”

The $10,000 commission is part of a public art project included in University Health System’s capital improvement program and coordinated by the SaludArte Foundation.

Victoria Suescum has taught at ACC since 2006.

Suescum’s painting, “Bueno Como el Pan,“ or “Good as Bread,” will intertwine portraits of Mexican-American residents and images of baked goods. The design, chosen for its unique style and vibrant colors, represents the people the hospital serves and San Antonio’s renowned West Side bakeries.

“I wanted the images to tell the story about the kind of people who live in the community,” she says, adding that she hopes the painting elicits pleasant memories and encourages storytelling among hospital visitors.

Originally from Panama, Suescum obtained a bachelor’s degree in studio art and art history from Wellesley College. She returned to Panama, but eventually decided to leave the instability of her native country and move to Texas to pursue a master’s degree at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Suescum first became acquainted with the city’s bakeries and the stories behind various baked goods while working on a 2005 Dia de los Muertos exhibit.

“I became educated about the importance of bread to the Hispanic culture,” she says. Suescum’s work has been featured in more than 50 shows and competitions worldwide. She has been with ACC since 2006.

Because her painting will hang in a so-called “50-year” building – one constructed for long-term use – Suescum says the hospital project offers a rare opportunity to create a legacy that can’t be achieved by showing pieces in a gallery.

“I would hope that my life makes a difference,” she says. “This is an opportunity to make a piece with long-lasting influence.”

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