embrace - liu

About the Artwork


Jessica Liu

About the artist: 

Jessica Liu is currently a third-year medical student at the University of California Davis, where she serves as a codirector of the Willow Student-Run Free Clinic. “One of my favorite quotes is from Albert Einstein, who wrote, ‘The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.’ Having a creative outlet while in medical school allows me to continue to stand in awe before the mysterious.”

About the artwork:

“The Willow Student-Run Free Clinic holds a weekly Wellness Night at the local Salvation Army, where residents of the shelter gather to draw, paint and meditate and, in so doing, release some of the stresses of homelessness. As I’ve sat down and painted alongside these residents, I’ve become witness to the powerful healing potential of the paintbrush, including its ability to open dialogue among strangers and to build a sense of community. I have been moved by the residents’ stories, journeys, struggles, and by their incredible talent. I felt inspired to showcase their art work through one piece that reflects the spirit of the group. The collage in the photograph combines fifteen different works of art by various participants of the Wellness Group into a unified work of art. Similarly, although the residents at the Salvation Army and I come from disparate backgrounds, we gather weekly as a humble community. We are both transient populations–residents and student doctors come and go–but this experience has given me the lasting appreciation for a holistic approach to healing.”

Visuals editor:

Justin Sanders


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