Coping with Cancer Through Art

Randy head shot

Randy Bostic

Los Angeles-based Randy Bostic voted The Phillips Collection “Best Museum off the Mall” in Washington City Paper’s Best of DC 2015. She explains why in this guest blog post. 

I live in Los Angeles. I started coming to DC regularly in 2011 because of chemotherapy treatments at the NIH for a rare cancer. To pass the time during the weeklong treatment periods, I was always visiting different places in and around DC. On my third trip, I first went to the Phillips. I was amazed at the depth and variety of the art, especially Jacob Lawrence’s Migration Series, The Rothko Room, and the setting of the two buildings. I soon stopped going to other museums, and every trip I would make my pilgrimage to the Phillips. I realized that I got more out of coming to the Phillips repeatedly than I did going to different places each trip. Sometimes friends and family would accompany me on my bimonthly “chemo vacations,” and I found myself taking them to the Phillips as well. Knowing that I had the Phillips to look forward to on my trips really helped me get through a very difficult time.

Now I am 4 years into remission. Whenever I go to the NIH for check ups, I stop at the Phillips. The gallery feels like an old friend, a support, an inspiration to me. Whenever I walk in, I feel like I am surrounded by such a powerful life force. The Phillips is more than a museum to me. Lawrence, Rothko, Klee, the Laib Wax Room, and the rest got me through so much. It was a healing place to me.

Randy Bostic

12 thoughts on “Coping with Cancer Through Art

  1. Beautiful testimony. Art can be life-giving and healing! God bless you, Randy! So happy about your remission!

  2. Randy, wonderful statement, and beautifully written–just like you! Maybe we can go with you to the Phillips next time you’re out this way! Love, Tim Z.

    • Tim, I would love to go there someday with you, Marty and Ori. It is a wonderful place. And thank you for always welcoming me on my healing trips to Maryland!!!!

  3. Quite inspirational and a fantastic testimonial for art and the power of healing ! Thanks for sharing Randy! So glad you are out of the woods and lighting the world with your beautiful presence!

  4. Dear Randy,

    Reading your comment made me feel as if I were with you. You are such a warm lovely human being and I miss you so much. I’ve been meaning to get in touch. Much love to you, Gene and the girls. You are as beautiful as ever. Jody

    • Jody, It has been too long!!! We should go to the Phillips sometime together….and to NY….and to LA…..And to England. Hopefully in the not too distant future. Miss you a lot.

  5. Randy, this is as beautiful a testament to the museum as you are. I hope to visit it one day. Love you!

  6. Randy this was just so beautiful and I personally am so grateful that you have discovered this museum because they were so instrumental in your healing and this is something that we as your family needed for you…healing
    Love you so much,

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