“Thank you for sending me the photos you took of Terrell State Hospital. Permit me to state that you have a rare talent for bringing out the soul of a place and invoking an emotional reaction. I am very impressed.”
– Dr. Joe M. Finch (Superintendent, Terrell State Hospital)

It is Ralena’s hope that the images of these institutions will not only provide some documentation of the history of mental institutions and mental health in the U.S. but also provide guidance for the future choices that we make as a society in regards to the treatment of mental illness. The photographs are solely of the architecture and land of these historic institutions; even though the images speak greatly to issue of neglect, abandonment, and decay of these historic buildings, many of these institutions are still operational.

“Recognizing that past civilizations are often judged by their architecture, one cannot help but to wonder how our future critics will regard the architecture we leave as our legacy. Equally as important, how will they judge our performance as the caretaker of both the built and the natural environment?”
(CA State Architect, David Thorman)