Imperial Health Charity is delighted to launch this new exhibition of portraits by award-winning photographer Dana Popa. Dana was born in Romania in 1977 and she lives in London with her husband and two children. Her work has a strong focus on contemporary social issues, with a particular interest in human rights. Dana has exhibited widely, both in the UK and internationally, and received the Jury Prize in the Days Japan International Photojournalism Awards and the Jerwood Photography Award.
At Imperial Health Charity we fund and care for the art collection housed at the Trust. It has long been our ambition to work on an arts project that celebrates the Trust's incredible 14,000+ workforce. We were therefore delighted when Dana contacted us about a similar project, having been introduced by her neighbour – a consultant at Charing Cross Hospital.
Starting the project in the summer of 2020, during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, meant that careful steps had to be followed to ensure the safety of all those taking part. We were keen to capture this pivotal moment in the Trust’s history through its people and to bring awareness to all the staff making a difference during such a challenging time. So we made a great effort to look for the unsung heroes and behind-the-scenes roles, without which our hospitals could not function.
The exhibition is a celebration of the wonderful people who work tirelessly for the benefit of others. Whether it’s directly treating patients or helping to keep our hospitals clean and tidy, we’re saluting the roles that many people may not even know about - such as the plumber who fixes the showers or the postman who delivers the internal mail. Whilst working on the project, we learned about roles that we had never considered, from the technician who designs and builds prosthetic limbs to the psychologist who looks after the mental health of staff.
The workforce at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust is incredibly diverse, and it’s not unusual for staff to move from other continents specifically to work here. This cultural mix brings joy to the atmosphere within the Trust, and we hope a sense of this is captured in the exhibition.