Refraction - CODAworx


Client: Boston Children's Hospital

Location: Boston, MA, United States

Completion date: 2024

Project Team


MASARY Studios


Boston Children's Hospital

Art Program Manager

Elisabeth Gordon

Boston Children's Hospital

Art Consultant

Christina Godfrey

Sunne Savage Gallery

Creative Director / Design Director

Caleb Hawkins

MASARY Studios

Creative Director / Production Director

Sam Okerstrom-Lang

MASARY Studios

Project Manager

Grace Fo

MASARY Studios

Fabrication / Installation

Jaywalk Studio


This suspended artwork designed for the Multi-Faith Chapel at Boston Children’s Hospital embodies light, reflection and refraction. The sculpture serves as a connection point for all practices of faith, spirituality, and relationships with the universe. Its iridescent quality invites contemplation and creates an atmosphere of reflection, optimism, and hope for the Boston Children’s Hospital community. Entitled Refraction, the sculpture is composed of a billowing cascade of 263 individual transparent pendants spanning 15 feet, suspended from the Chapel’s 16-foot vaulted ceiling. Dichroic film is applied to a single side of each pendant allowing the sculpture to refract natural sunlight each day through the Chapel’s windows. Programmed artificial light accentuates their color and illuminates the pendants at night. The lighting program is based on the four seasons of the Northern Hemisphere, referencing the natural cycles of light through color. The color palette changes at each equinox and solstice, allowing the artwork and the space itself to be in synchronicity with the cycles of the cosmic world.


MASARY collaborated with Boston Children's Hospital’s Art Program and its Chaplains to create the artwork. The Hospital team sought a unique, site-specific work that would elevate the Chapel’s intentionally secular design to a non-denominational sacred space. The Chaplains were specifically interested in how the artwork could relate to the passage of time—as in the four seasons of the natural world—while avoiding obvious representations of nature. Other goals included: creating an artwork that could incorporate a lighting element, would serve as a connection point to all guests of the room, be low maintenance and durable, and dynamic in nature.


The Sunne Savage Gallery, Art Consultant to Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH), managed the RFQ and RFP process for the Chapel Sculpture Commission through Codaworx. Once MASARY’s concept was chosen, BCH’s Art Program Manager, its Chaplains, and the Sunne Savage Gallery worked closely with MASARY to refine the design, materials, lighting and hanging systems, and installation preparations.

Prototyping took place at MASARY to explore the qualities of the sculpture materials and lighting. MASARY developed and tested a custom lighting program and four distinct color palettes, one for each season. This process helped realize the intended effect and ensure the installation needs of BCH could be met.

MASARY engaged Jaywalk Studio to fabricate and install the artwork; Jaywalk fabricated and finished the pendants offsite, then used an intricate template system to hang all 263 pendants directly from the Chapel ceiling, offering a clean look and secure mounting solution.

Throughout the process, the BCH Chaplains were intimately involved in many decisions—from the type of materials used for the pendants and hardware, to the cadence of the lighting program. They feel great connection and pride in the work that they helped bring into being and will grace their Chapel for years to come.