Client: State of Oregon, Department of Human Services
Location: Junction City, OR, United States
Completion date: 2015
Dana Lynn Louis
Dana Lynn Louis, Artist
The new Oregon State Hospital provides 174 beds and robust treatment programs for both civil and forensic adult psychiatric patients. The facility provides a stimulating and uplifting environment that supports healing and recovery. One of the most significant and meaningful spaces is the main entry and lobby. Light-filled during the day and dramatically radiant at night, the entry is a poignant reminder and dedication to the hospital’s mission and the life journeys of patients. A 30’ x 10’ glass etched entry window wall entitled “Hopes & Dreams” offers inspiration, encouragement, optimism, and affirmation for visitors.
The design of the hospital’s interiors is based on a vision of the “Journey of Recovery” - healing, organic, natural and light-filled spaces. The lobby’s interior, purposely calm and composed, is designed with the hues and materials of nature. As one approaches the building’s main entry, the etched glass speaks: large-scale, evocative and inspiring words expressing hope, courage and acceptance. Exiting the lobby, a stunning display of words is filtered through the glass with dramatic views of the brilliant sky and distant mountains as a backdrop. Among the large-scale words are the patients’ poems, statements and memories.
The Hopes and Dreams installation was primarily directed by the artist with collaboration with the architectural and interior design team and the hospital. Through a hospital residency and numerous hours spent in writing sessions, the artist and patients collectively wrote poems, songs and stories, which were etched in the glass in multiple languages and in varying type faces and sizes. A larger-scale typeface was used on the lobby window’s exterior in order to be fully visible as one approaches the facility, while a smaller typeface on the window’s interior was meant to be experienced more intimately – one can read some of the full excerpts. The etched words were carefully selected for the lobby for family and visitors to share in the patient experiences depicting their hopes and dreams. The senior interior designer was a guest at the artist selection committee meetings and also assisted the artist coordinate spaces for the art installations.
The lobby’s two-story high, light-filled atrium also includes a stunning ceiling-hung sculpture indicative of a "wish" - named to mimic a dandelion and how it represents making a wish equals positivity. In addition to the ceiling sculpture, there are small, mirrored pieces embedded in the atrium walls as if they have been blown or scattered within the space. All art pieces are inspired by nature and designed by the same regional artist who designed the Hopes and Dreams window installation.