Columbia Memorial Hospital (CMH) is hosting a temporary exhibit of monotypes by local printmaker Gin Laughery.

CMH was recently named the nation's 20th "Planetree Patient-Centered Hospital," putting it among the world's most patient-centered hospitals. One of the key tenets of the Planetree philosophy is that art and entertainment are healing elements that should be integrated into the healthcare experience.

"Personal Landscapes" a collection of monotypes by local printmaker Gin Laughery is currently on display in the CMH Health & Wellness Pavilion. This is a natural connection for Laughery who, prior to her career as a printmaker, spent 25 years as a speech language pathologist.

"I feel this exhibit brings me full circle, connecting my earlier professional life with my career as a printmaker," Laughery said. "As a speech language pathologist, I incorporated art and literature into therapy, enriching the process and creating a broader healing perspective."

This collection is an exploration of internal and external landscapes. "Many of these monotypes explore the space around a horizon line, inviting the viewer to allow their thoughts to travel wide and far," Laughery said.

Laughery grew up in eastern Washington and Oregon and these landscapes reflect her early fascination with the expanses of the eastern side of the Cascades. The images are monotypes, a single impression printed from a Plexiglas plate on which etching inks have been manipulated to form a unique image. An etching press is used to transfer the image to acid-free paper under pressure. Additional passes through the press are used to add color, texture and detail. This results in an individual print with surprising complexity and depth of color.

The prints suggest an abstraction of landscape, leaving space for the viewer to create interpretation. Luminosity created by saturated color evokes a visceral reaction in the viewer.

"In some way, we are all travelers," Laughery explains in her artist's statement. "I hope when people view these images they will connect with their own journey, personal landscapes and internal reflections."

CMH will host a public exhibit opening reception with the artist on Oct. 25, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., on the second floor of the Pavilion. Refreshments will be served.

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