Tree of Hope - CODAworx

Client: Scripps MD Anderson - Prebys Cancer Center

Location: San Diego, CA, United States

Completion date: 2023

Project Team


Barbara A Westfall

Barbara Westfall Art Glass Design

Art Consultant

Pam Nickell

Aesthetics, Inc.

Metal Fabrication

Mike Swick

Spartan Laser

CAD digital files

Bert Beverslius

Bert B CAD & Design


Artist creates cancer ribbons of hope for patients undergoing treatment. The message of hope is the overriding theme of an art installation located in the lobby of Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center — a clinically integrated cancer care program that treats patients throughout San Diego County. The group commissioned artist, Barbara Westfall MFA, to design and fabricate a glass and metal Tree of Hope with colorful cancer ribbons scattered throughout the tree branches. The client wanted a comforting work of art for their lobby that transformed the building architecture to create a positive and healing environment to help support patients receiving services at the Prebys Cancer Center facility. The Tree of Hope is 14′ w x 9’h and breathes nature’s beauty and color into the interior of the clinic.


The goal for the commissioned artwork is to provide cancer patients, healthcare workers, and administrative staff with a beautiful art glass installation to inspire healing, promote cancer survival, and bring the beauty of nature inside the clinic lobby.


Aesthetics, Inc. represented Barbara Westfall Art Glass Design and guided the team seamlessly throughout the process. Aesthetics, Inc. assists organizations in the physical expression of their mission, vision, and values through art and design. The consultants help guide both the artist and the healthcare client in selecting the perfect theme, materials, and color for the art commission. The project began with 6 color sketches for client selection. Prototype glass leaves were created by the artist for approval by the client. Once the design and dimensions of the Tree of Hope were agreed upon, the artist worked with CAD developers to create a scale drawing set into the architects' elevation plans. Custom laser-cut metal fabrication of the cancer ribbons was approved and fabricated. The artist created all of the large-scale green tree leaves by hand, fusing them twice in the kiln to bend the glass into naturalistic forms. The artist backed the tree trunk with stainless steel, to provide support for the glass, able to withstand custodial room cleaning. Hang Your Glass system was used with custom locking standoffs. The art took five months to make and installed in 6 hours. The Tree of Hope is well received. Patients and staff enjoy taking photos of themselves with the life-size tree.