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Shoreline exhibition spotlights works created by veterans engaged in art therapy

"Painting Away the Trauma II" features creative works illustrating what the military experience was like for veterans.

SHORELINE, Wash. — An art exhibit in Shoreline Wednesday highlighted works by veterans engaged in art therapy. 

The paintings, sculpture and metalwork dealt with what the military experience was like for the veterans and also how art and creative projects provide a platform for building community and connection. 

The event was presented by the WA AmeriCorps Vet Corps and Shoreline Community College, hosted in the college's Pagoda Union Building. 

Those who attended the exhibition had the opportunity to speak directly with the veterans about the relationship between art therapy, mental healthcare and post-traumatic healing. 

“This exhibit is intended to honor and recognize the obstacles that our veterans must overcome,” said Morgan Davis, Shoreline CC Vet Corps Navigator. “Art therapy can bring a measure of peace and functionality to veterans who are facing a war all over again as they cope with anxieties born of service-related post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury and/or military sexual trauma.”

The exhibit, titled "Painting Away the Trauma II" is part of a visual history project that collects different types of artworks detailing the experiences of veterans while preserving the value of art therapy, according to a release from the Vet Corps. Art therapy can be an effective form of treatment working alongside other therapies. 

The event also featured works by veteran artist Michael Reagan of Edmonds. Reagan has raised millions of dollars for charities across the country through his artwork. Through his Fallen Hero Portrait Project, Regan has painted more than 8,700 portraits of those who died while serving in the military, free of charge for their families. 

Reagan will display several of his artworks at the event, including portraits of fallen military members.

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