Arts & Justice Events Across the US

Please write to info@thejusticeartscoalition.org if you have an event for us to share! 

Events can also be found on our Google calendar.

25th Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners

The Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners is one of the largest exhibitions of art by incarcerated artists in the country. Each year, faculty, staff and students from the University of Michigan travel to correctional facilities across Michigan and select work for the exhibition while providing feedback and critique that strengthens artist’s work and builds community around art making inside prisons.

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Meet Us Quickly: Painting for Justice from Prison

A Digital Exhibition

Museum of the African Diaspora is proud to present Meet Us Quickly: Painting for Justice from Prison, an exhibition of the work of twelve artists incarcerated at San Quentin State Prison. The twenty-one works in the exhibition include linocut prints, acrylic paintings, ink drawings on paper, and collage and are organized and curated by Prison Renaissance co-founder Rahsaan “New York” Thomas. Eclectic in influence, certain works in this exhibition nod to pointillism and neo-constructivism while others honor the importance of Aaron Douglas and the Harlem Renaissance. These artists maintain significant artistic practices spanning diverse techniques and subjects. The works are presented with accompanying statements written by each artist, allowing these incarcerated men to speak for themselves and share their vision and perspectives in their own words.

Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration 

On September 17, join JAC in NYC to celebrate the opening of Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration at MoMA PS1! Eight artists in JAC’s national network will have works on display in this exhibition, which runs through April 4. More details on the opening event to come. For general info about the exhibit, click here.

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Chosen Family: Marking Time Artist Talks with Mary Baxter

Every other Thursday through April 1, 12 p.m. EST

2021 means something new. We invited artist Mary Enoch Elizabeth Baxter to host a series of online conversations with her fellow artists in Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration. These lunchtime chats bring a wide range of voices into dialogue to consider how bonds are forged through and around creative practice in the face of state-imposed separation.

This Thursday, January 7, Baxter will be in discussion with artists Jesse Krimes, Jared Owens, and Gilberto Rivera, who formed a deep friendship centered by their art practice while incarcerated.

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Amplify Music’s weekly live-streamed concert – Amplify TV

AmplifyTV is a safe, inclusive space for live-streamed music in the face of a global pandemic and beyond. We emphasize booking musicians with prior justice involvement. Following each show, a video recording is sent to juvenile facilities around Virginia. Shows are publicly live-streamed each Thursday at 8pm. A donation of $10 is encouraged and all earnings from each show will be divided between Amplify Music and the performer(s).

Amplify Music is hosting weekly livestreamed concerts through Amplify TV and they are looking for performers, especially individuals who were formerly incarcerated. These are free events, and donations received during the concert are split between the performers and Amplify Music! Please sign-up through this form. 

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Drama Therapy Group

Thursdays ongoing: February 18, March 18, April 15, May 20

9:30 AM-10:30 AM, Zoom, Free of Charge

You are invited to a Drama Therapy Group for the Formerly Incarcerated that will be ongoing on every third Thursday of the month. When you RSVP, you will get the zoom link to join. We are a group of Drama Therapists who have been meeting every week for several months as a way of staying connected, educating ourselves, and coming up with opportunities for ongoing work. We are hoping to collaborate with the many incredible people who have re-entered and are interested in continuing to go deeper with theatrical, creative work both for personal connection, healing, and workshopping their own ideas. Our goal is to share freely, play, and to go in a direction that the group as a whole wishes to go – the possibilities are endless.
 
Please join any week you can. You don’t have to commit to every group or month. Please share with any formerly incarcerated peers. We are eager to meet new people as well.
 
We look forward to sharing this time together!
 
Led by Drama Therapists: Kamran Afary, Elizabeth Malone Alteet, Lynn Baker-Nauman, and Marianne Shine.
 
RSVP to malone.lizzie@gmail.com for Zoom link and details. 

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Artists Dismantling Capitalism

Register here. 

Donations of $5-100 are encouraged to help cover the costs of the conference and to pay artists (prioritizing BIPOC artists)

This free/donation based Symposium offers 17 sessions facilitated by artists, community members and scholars. Sessions will focus on a wide range of topics including theater, music cooperatives, decolonizing the body, Hip Hop, Solidarity Economics, spirituality and more. Each session offers a glimpse into the use of artistic and creative practice in re-imaging and creating a new society based on a Solidarity Economy. In addition to local community members  and artists, the conference will feature visiting facilitators including Kwame Braxton and Shambe Jones of Cooperation Jackson, MS., Nati Linares of New Economy Network, David Ferris of the Highlander Center and more. This year’s symposium will also mark the virtual launch of “Just Imagine,” a public art show featuring pieces imagining a just transition to tomorrow’s world (Info to submit a piece below). Since our symposium will be online this year, we will continue the tradition of feeding folks by gathering non-perishable food through a food drive that will be distributed through our Little Free Pantry network. 

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Chosen Family: Marking Time Artist Talks with Mary Baxter

Thu, Apr 1, 12:00–1:30 p.m.

Lecture/Panel: etta cetera, Nicole Fleetwood, Wendy Jason,
Donna Loughney, and Treacy Ziegler on currently incarcerated “Marking Time” artists: Conor Broderick, Brian Hindson, William B. Livingston III, Mark Loughney, Cedar Mortenson, Jesse Osmun, James Sepesi, Todd (Hyung-Rae) Tarselli, and Jerome Washington.

These lunchtime conversations between Mary Enoch Elizabeth Baxter and her fellow artists in Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration, bring a wide range of voices into dialogue to consider how bonds are forged through and around creative practice in the face of state-imposed separation. How does incarceration impact existing relationships, and how can art construct new forms of connection—a “chosen family”—in turn?

 

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Exhibition: Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration

Opens April 5, 2020 at MoMA PS1, NYC

“MoMA PS1 will present a major exhibition exploring the work of artists within US prisons and the centrality of incarceration to contemporary art and culture, on view from April 5 through August 23, 2020. Featuring art made by people in prisons and work by nonincarcerated artists concerned with state repression, erasure, and imprisonment, Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration highlights more than 35 artists, including American Artist, Tameca Cole, Russell Craig, James “Yaya” Hough, Jesse Krimes, Mark Loughney, Gilberto Rivera, and Sable Elyse Smith. Alongside the exhibition, a series of public programs, education initiatives, and ongoing projects at MoMA PS1 will explore the social and cultural impact of mass incarceration.

On view across PS1’s second floor galleries, Marking Time features works that bear witness to artists’ experimentation with and reimagining of the fundamentals of living—time, space, and physical matter—pushing the possibilities of these basic features of daily experience to create new aesthetic visions achieved through material and formal invention. The resulting work is often laborious, time-consuming, and immersive, as incarcerated artists manage penal time through their work and experiment with the material constraints that shape art making in prison. The exhibition also includes work made by nonincarcerated artists—both artists who were formerly incarcerated and those personally impacted by the US prison system. From various sites of freedom or unfreedom, these artists devise strategies for visualizing, mapping, and making physically present the impact and scale of life under carceral conditions, underscoring how prisons and the prison industrial complex have shaped contemporary culture.

Marking Time is organized by guest curator Dr. Nicole R. Fleetwood, Professor of American Studies and Art History at Rutgers University, and reflects her decade-long dedication to the research, analysis, and archiving of the visual art and creative practices of incarcerated artists and art that responds to mass incarceration. The exhibition corresponds with the release of Fleetwood’s new book, Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration (Harvard University Press, 2020), a trailblazing publication on this subject.

Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration is organized by Dr. Nicole R. Fleetwood, Guest Curator; Amy Rosenblum-Martín, Guest Assistant Curator; and Jocelyn Miller, Assistant Curator, MoMA PS1.

Support is provided by the Office of the Provost and the School of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers University – New Brunswick.”

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Art and Imagination Inside Prisons

April 6, 2021

his conversation will explore art-making inside the prison industrial complex as a practice of freedom by incarcerated artists. Panelists will discuss artworks crafted behind the prison wall and the creative processes involved in making, learning, and teaching art behind bars.

This is the second event in a three-part series. We encourage you to register for Art as Transformation: Music and Drama for Incarcerated Youth (3/30) and Freedom-Making in an Age of Mass Incarceration (4/13) as well.

This series is a prelude to Death By Life, a virtual opera presented by White Snake Projects, which explores the intersection of systemic racism and mass incarceration.

Featured Artists:

Carole Alden, architectural crochet artist

Renaldo Hudson, visual artist

Michelle Daniel (Jones), photographer and New York University doctoral student

Jesse Krimes, visual artist

Damon Locks, teaching artist with the Prison + Neighborhood Arts/Education Project

Moderator: Alice Kim, Director of Human Rights Practice, Pozen Center Human Rights Lab

 

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Equity, Wealth, Race and Racism in the Justice System-Part 1 virtual training 

April 8, 2021 at 2:00 CST.

Of all the challenges and dilemmas that folks like us might come together to discuss and debate, there is none as shamefully defining of our nation’s justice systems, nor as seemingly resistant to change, as racial disparities. We work in a system that—like so many human enterprises—suffers from numerous shortcomings. The persistence of these problems, especially our dogged adherence to policies and practices that have proven ineffective and costly, or that have been discredited by research, or that have been exposed as routinely abusive, is difficult to understand without the lens of racial equity. To truly eliminate racial and ethnical disparities, all staff within an agency or organization need to understand the history of racism, implicit and explicit bias, and the impact racial and ethnic disparities have when trying to engage families and young people.

Justice For Families’ (J4F) family engagement specialists have worked with foundations, juvenile justice agencies, mental health advocacy groups and numerous other child-serving agencies for over two decades. Our consultants have 50+ years experience engaging families and bring unique insights and perspectives of having lived-experience with their own children.

Each participant will receive a certificate of completion. To register for this event, click here.

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Improv Workshop: “Cheesy Dating Video”

Sun, Apr 11 1:00 PM

Improv Workshop with Dan Gerics and Ella McAndrew: “Cheesy Dating Video”


In this improvisational acting workshop, theatre veterans and Youth Arts:Unlocked teaching artists Dan Gerics and Ella McAndrew will help you create the perfect cheesy 80’s style dating video! Use your voice, your face, gestures, and imagination to develop a character who’s sure to charm the viewer and help you snag the perfect mate! (For entertainment purposes only!)

Meet the Instructors:
Dan Gerics founded and co-leads the improvisational theatre workshops for YOUTH ARTS: UNLOCKED. Dan holds a MA in Theatre and a BA in music and has taught at SVSU and Mott Community College. He was the founder of Flint City Theatre and currently performs and co-directs productions for the Goblin King Players.
Learn more about Dan at:
http://dgerics.wix.com/dangerics 

Ella McAndrew has over 20 years of experience on the stage as an actress. Trained in Shakespeare, Contemporary, Musical, and improvisational theater, she has worked in various theater companies throughout Genesee County. Ella has worked for The Whiting and The Capitol Theatre as the Director of Operations and Community Outreach since 2014 and has been a teaching artist with Youth Arts Unlocked since 2013.

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Freedom-Making in an Age of Mass Incarceration

April 13, 2021

Join the Pozen Center Human Rights Lab and White Snake Projects for a panel discussion about what freedom-making means within the deeply carceral context of contemporary America. A Q&A will follow the moderated conversation.

This is the final event in a three-part series. We encourage you to register for Art as Transformation: Music and Drama for Incarcerated Youth (3/30) and Art and Imagination Inside Prisons (4/6) as well.

This series is a prelude to Death By Life, a virtual opera presented by White Snake Projects, which explores the intersection of systemic racism and mass incarceration.

Panelists:

Norris Henderson, Founder and Executive Director, Voice of the Experienced (VOTE)

Toussaint Losier, Assistant Professor of Afro-American Studies, UMass-Amherst; editor, Rethinking the American Prison Movement

Erica Meiners, Professor of Education and Women’s and Gender Studies, Northeastern Illinois University; author, For the Children? Protecting Innocence in a Carceral State

Romarilyn Ralston, Program Director, Project Rebound; California Coalition for Women Prisoners

Beth Richie, Professor of Criminology, Law and Justice and African American Studies, University of Illinois-Chicago; author, Arrested Justice: Black Women, Violence, and America’s Prison Nation

Moderator:

Alice Kim, Director of Human Rights Practice, Pozen Center Human Rights Lab

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Stun & Run: Women’s Self Defense

Sun, Apr 25 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM

Want to remove the word VICTIM from your vocabulary? Then sign up for STUN & RUN- a workshop designed exclusively for women who want to learn what they can do to protect themselves on an everyday basis. Created by Master Dora King, one of the highest ranking women martial artists in the country, this workshop will give you the tools to make self defense a way of life. The workshop will include both practice of blocks and defensive techniques as well as discussion of vital spots and striking points.


This workshop is open to girls and women of all ages. Wear comfortable clothing.

Meet the Instructor:
Master Dora King is a 7th degree Black Belt with King Karate and has trained in the martial arts for 35 years. She is the Director of Youth Karate-Ka Association; a non-profit which provides at risk youth an opportunity to train in the martial arts and healthy life choices. She also Co-Founded the Harvesting Earth Educational Farm designed to introduce local, organic food as a part of our healthy life choices. Dora founded the Stun & Run Self Defense system in an effort to offer females an opportunity to train with other females in a safe and supportive atmosphere.

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Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration

September 17, 2020 – April 04, 2021

MoMA PS1

As its first exhibition upon reopening to the public, MoMA PS1 will present a major exhibition exploring the work of artists within US prisons and the centrality of incarceration to contemporary art and culture, on view from September 17, 2020 through April 4, 2021. Featuring art made by people in prisons and work by nonincarcerated artists concerned with state repression, erasure, and imprisonment, Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration highlights more than 35 artists, including American Artist, Tameca Cole, Russell Craig, Maria Gaspar, James “Yaya” Hough, Jesse Krimes, Mark Loughney, Gilberto Rivera, and Sable Elyse Smith. The exhibition has been updated to reflect the growing COVID-19 crisis in US prisons, featuring new works by exhibition artists made in response to this ongoing emergency. Alongside the exhibition, a series of public programs, education initiatives, and ongoing projects at MoMA PS1 will explore the social and cultural impact of mass incarceration.

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INCCIP’s 3rd Biennial Virtual Conference

September 29, 2021 through October 01, 2021. Early Registration information will be posted soon.

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Cosmic Cowboy

Spring 2022
Emerson Paramount Center, Robert J. Orchard Stage Boston

You are the lone cowboy Silhouetted against your comet’s fiery tail Riding the endless cosmos Into the deepest darkness.

Inspired by the historic landing of the space probe Philae on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, Cosmic Cowboy explores the origins of the universe beginning at the Big Bang when the universe is formed by the mating of the Sumerian gods, Tiamat and Apsu. It traverses the mystery of time and space, through wormholes, black holes and alternate universes, until it comes full circle into the ultimate mystery – the human heart. Tia, Tiamat’s daughter, befriends the robotic probe and together, they confront the Astronaut from the spaceship Mayflower sent to retrieve the robot and to capture Tia, the first extra-terrestial known to us.

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Monkey: A Kung Fu Parable

2022
Boston

A new look at old Monkey, the greatest quest hero from ancient times

With his comrades-in-arms, Zhu, a heavenly Marshall reincarnated into a Pig for his evil, gluttonous ways, and Sha, once a princess, now a sand monster who devours unwary travellers, this unlikely trio journeys west. They become disciples and protectors of the Monk sent by Buddha to retrieve the holy Sutras in the hopes that this journey will bring each of them their own personal salvation. An ancient Wizard of Oz tale for our times.