Inspire Us Recipient Artwork

Inspire Us Recipient Artwork

Fourth Floor Artwork

Here is the artwork found on the fourth floor of our Cochlear Americas headquarters. Click on an image to see a larger version of that art.

I suffer from a rare disease called Riboflavin Transporter Deficiency Syndrome. I am 22 years old and became a Cochlear recipient at the age of 6. As a result of my disease, I can no longer hold anything with my hands. Therefore, I use my nose to draw on an iPad. I created this artwork using my nose and a drawing app on my iPad Pro. I am also visually impaired due to my disease, and the back light from the iPad helps me to see what I am drawing.

Alexander F.

Woodbine, Maryland
Second Awakening - Rise up: Silent Margins Series 2018 - I remember the first time the cochlear implant was activated after I was implanted at age 6 and it surprised me. I had little to no hearing left that even the most powerful hearing aids could not aid my hearing at all. So when I was activated, it was a “second awakening”, recognizing there was a new world of sound beyond the visual world. I remember telling the audiologist in an interview that I could “hear the trains and birds, they sound terrible! To explain the symbols in my painting: My left ear has the cochlear implant. I am gripping crayons during my initial shock to show my sudden realization of visuals versus sound. There is a chessboard in the background that just emerged out of my innocent white youthful past before the “sound.” A train rushes through my ears while birds are flying around to emphasize the rush of sudden sound. Baldness represents vulnerability and to give the viewer the chance to relate to my experience a bit further.

Ashley H.

Tampa, Florida
Corbin created this piece in 5th grade art class. He is a reluctant artist (would rather be moving) but found a way to convey his energy and focus into this fantastic mixed media piece (including tempera paint, clear transparency, sharpie and colored paper) that clearly shows stage one of his ear construction and his Baha.

Corbin K.

Stoughton, Wisconsin
This small ceramic tile mural depicts two leaves, impressed in the clay. The leaves were collected from the woods behind our house. When I walk in the woods in the fall, I can hear the crunch of the dried fallen leaves beneath my feet. The tiles were fired in the high-fire gas kiln I’ve built in our backyard. Two leaves? I’m bi-lateral.

Craig H.

Davison, Michigan
I just recently started wood carving, and this is my first piece. It is a comfort bird, which can be easily held in the palm of your hand and stroked. This one is carved from the wood of a butternut tree. The birds’ singing was what I missed the most when I lost my high frequencies. Their chirps and songs are one of the precious things I now hear because of my Hybrid implants. I usually open my bedroom window when first putting on my processors in the morning so the first thing I hear in the day is the birds. What a comfort it is to hear them again!

Deb T.

Loveland, Ohio
I am a haiku poet and poetry is my art. I have composed many haiku poems and published two books. I have created a haiku poem for this project. “I’m Unstoppable”.

Dick S.

Rancho Cordova, California
My daughter, Abigail, was 4 years old when her cochlear implant was activated. At the moment the first sounds came into her cochlear implant, her face LIT UP! It was a truly emotional experience and was captured on video. Her activation has been viewed by almost 200,000 people on YouTube! As a busy home school mom and art instructor, I rarely get to paint for myself, but when I saw your call to receive artwork that was emotional and related to a hearing journey, this moment is what came to mind as it is truly a touching beginning. This painting is of 4-year-old Abigail, cochlear implant activated for the first time, recreated through synesthesia to include words hidden in the sound waves such as “ Hear now. And always” “ Hope” “Thankful” “Knowledge” “Successful” and other words to describe what may lie ahead on her journey with sound. It has truly been a blessing what Cochlear America has done for her. She is now 13, and has overcome so many obstacles, hearing isn’t one of them anymore. She is a talented artist herself and wants to be a video game designer when she grows up.

Elizabeth S.

Choctaw, Oklahoma
I lost the hearing in my left ear when I was four years old and learned to live actively with partial hearing. Later, 13 years ago, I began to lose hearing in my right ear. It was unknown if cochlear implants would be effective. I wondered what I would do if I had no hearing and decided that photography would be a satisfying hobby. I researched equipment, took classes, and my photography improved. Images have been exhibited in a couple of shows and a few have sold. In the meantime, my bilateral cochlear implants have successfully allowed me to hear again. 
                        This image is of the barrio viejo in Tucson Arizona. In the 1880’s and ‘90’s, this was home to a culturally diverse community of working-class people from America, Europe, Africa and Asia. Much of it was destroyed in the 1960s for urban renewal but significant city blocks have been restored and again reused by a diverse population. The buildings are well loved by both inhabitants and visitors. The renewed barrio viejo is not only useful but also preserves some of Tucson’s architectural history.

Ellen F.

Denver, Colorado
I created this painting prior to receiving my cochlear implant, during the time when my hearing had worsened dramatically due to auto-immune inner ear disease. I had been reading about the function of the inner ear and in my mind’s eye, imagined a healthy one as like a beautiful inland sea, with the hair cells basking in the sound, dancing joyfully to the different frequencies.

Janet M.

Bedford, Texas
This photograph was taken by me when I was on vacation. During this vacation my cochlear implant broke and I was completely deaf for 3 days. During this time, it made me see the beauty that surrounds us. In life we must learn to stay present with ourselves and our environment. There is no news to rush to the future or stay stuck in the past. It’s about here now.

Jillian B.

Dublin, Pennsylvania
My world gradually became silent over the course of time. I felt I was in a deep hole that was growing deeper as sounds disappeared from my life. When I got my first implant (I now have two), my world began to brighten. I began to hear things that I had not heard in a long time. The world grew brighter for me. I went from a deep dark place to a new world full of sounds and life.

Karen K.

Haymarket, Virginia
From Quiet Dawn to the Awakening to Nature’s Orchestra - Before my Cochlear implant, I would go down from our cabin to a rocky overhang on the Tennessee River to photograph the dawning of a new day. It was quiet, not a sound could I hear. After I had my Cochlear implant, I would go again to the rocky overhang to photograph the sunrise. I realized as I sat there that I could hear nature’s orchestra awakening. The first breeze of the day would cause the sound of small waves lapping against the rocks beneath me. Then, the rustling leaves and the pines sighing as the breeze woke them. The first notes of harmony from the song birds and the beating drum of the woodpecker deep in the woods seeking breakfast; the snort of the deer to its mate or off-spring to let them know man was in the area. I did not know what a remarkable performance of nature’s orchestra I had around me, as I was viewing my quiet dawn. What a special memorable experience. To regain the performance of nature’s sounds because of my Cochlear implant brings joy to my world of a quiet dawn. Silence is Golden; however, I would never want to go back to my hearing before my Cochlear implant. Thank you, I’m grateful.

Kent D.

Coppell, Texas
I was 45 years old when I put my Baha on for the first time in April 2013. Sounds filled the air as I walked out of my doctor’s office in Corpus Christi, Texas. I could hear the wind rustling, the fronds of the tall palm trees. I could hear chirps and calls of a flock of birds overhead. Even the sound of the air conditioner in my car surprised me. I didn’t know it made a sound! I was filled with wonder. For me, that was the day the birds started singing.

Laura L.

Rockport, Texas
I’ve always loved spirals and labyrinths, doodled them for years. Then with my acoustic neuroma journey and eventual Baha 5 Connect I was amazed with the cochlea diagrams in the doctor’s office. I used Baha 5 batteries to create a spiral.

Marilyn K.

Rochester, Michigan
When I suddenly lost my hearing in 2007, I became extremely depressed. It was almost two years before I was able to have surgery to receive my Baha implant. During the wait, I picked up a camera. Photography is my therapy and my passion.

Mellissa H.

Alba, Texas
Before & After - 
                        I used to take my hearing for granted... then, suddenly, I went deaf in my left ear and life changed forever. I thought deafness was quiet, I had no idea!
                        It was like a balloon was inflated in my head where all sounds and voices went in and bounced around with no way out. As time passed, it got louder and louder and felt like it was going to burst. My good ear couldn’t hear over the intense noise in my head. I strained to hear. It was exhausting! Without being able to differentiate between foreground and background noise, I couldn’t tell where sounds were coming from or even if they were real. It all sounded the same. I heard harsh, relentless noise 24/7. The daily struggle was intense, I was sad and depressed, staying home and retreating from life. It was just too painful.
                        Now, the intense noise is gone! I want to go out and live. My head is peaceful and my mind is free to be. I can hear birds singing, dirt and leaves crunching under my feet. I can enjoy music while carrying on a conversation and being social. I am uplifted and filled with joy and gratitude.

Patty H.

Santa Clarita, California
This painting/collage represents my favorite sounds. Owl = birds, trees = wind and breezes, clouds = thunder/storms, water = rivers and streams, stars = high frequencies like bells and chimes, lizard = animal sounds. The squiggle colorful lines = music. There is a lot going on in this piece, but that represents a noisy world—how beautiful it can be with the right colors and sounds.

Renee O.

Charlottesville, Virginia
My artwork portrays a medical logo surrounded by a stethoscope in the form of art called zentangles. In the audiology program, I have learned how important it is to involve the entire medical team to treat patients from a multi-dimensional, holistic point of view. Hence, the artwork tries to signify that the patient is medically protected under whichever doctor they choose to go because this is what our profession is designed to do; to make them feel safe about themselves, no matter their diagnoses.

Saahi K.

Richmond Hill, Ontario - Canada
I am a birdwatcher by hobby. I could never really hear the birds chirping or the beat of their wings. 
                        I was working in my yard one morning and heard this weird sound I have never heard before. Looking all around and seeing nothing. What the heck. I looked up to the sky and there was the noise. Two beautiful hummingbirds chasing each other and chirping like crazy. Oh, there is a hum of some kind. Oh my, the beat of their wings. I could not believe what I was hearing. Seriously hummingbirds make noise. This is one of the first sounds I could identify three months after my activation. It was the most beautiful sound ever. I had never heard them before. I stood there with tears going down my cheeks. I was so lost for words. I have no idea how long I was standing there just watching and listening. I cannot express the sheer joy in my heart every time I hear the remarkable sound those hummingbirds make. Thank you, Cochlear Americas, for the gift of hearing such magical sounds. My journey has been extremely difficult, but when I hear sounds, I have never heard, it is a journey well worth it. I truly hope to be able to share my happiness with others through my painting.

Sally-Ann L.

Tucson, Arizona

Other Floor Artwork:

Explore other artwork found on other floors of our Cochlear Americas headquarters.

Views expressed are those of the individual. Consult your health professional to determine if you are a candidate for Cochlear technology.