Wallables Founded in Children's Hospitals
n 1992, Dan Garr began working with an interior design firm to build a better environment for the Tustin Medical Center Pediatric floor in Orange County, CA. The designers wanted to make the atmosphere more child-friendly. Given that each floor in the hospital had white walls and plain patterned carpet, the first presentation involved changing the carpet to a pattern that had animal footprints on it, and creating something whimsical for the walls. Dan took the wall concept to a new level. The hospital accepted his presentation of wall animals that would be sculpted in bas-relief, and in life size proportions. Since it was a bit more expensive than they wanted, Dan created a Donor Wall Program that associated a nameplate for each animal. This ultimately led to a silent auction that both paid for the artwork, and raised $24,000 for the hospital foundation.
Dan created a donor wall for St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica with help from donations from Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver. Other projects were built at UCLA and Long Beach Memorial Medical Center. He also wrote a book, “Izzy the Bouncing Baby Elephant” for Miller’s Hospital in Long Beach which consisted of 4x6 foot book pages which line the walls of the children’s ward. His projects have generated over $800,000 to date for local Southern California Hospitals.
While installing the 3-D project in Tustin Dan was constantly asked if he could make custom wall sculptures for their children at home. Dan began making smaller more manageable wall sculptures, but as the demand grew, Dan had to figure out a more economical way to manufacture. Six years and many samples later Wallables Wall Décor was born.