Building upon a new level of cultural awareness regarding the benefits of arts in corrections programs, we would like to know if an expanded national organization would be a valuable asset to you and the work you do.
In these early stages, we feel the association could offer the following to its members:
Raise awareness of programmatic efficacy
Host national or regional conferences
Share best practices
Support, collect and disseminate relevant research
Offer professional development opportunities
What else can you imagine?
The following 5-minute survey is designed to help better understand the need for a national prison arts association and how it can best serve potential members like you. Your input is incredibly valuable during this early stage.
ANN ARBOR, MI – The Prison Creative Arts Project (PCAP) presents the Fifteenth Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners. Running from March 23 – April 7, 2010, the show will be held at the Duderstadt Center Gallery on the University of Michigan North Campus at 2281 Bonisteel Boulevard. Over the past 15 years, this nationally recognized show has grown to be the largest exhibition of prisoner art in the country. This year’s exhibition will include more than 300 works of art by over 200 artists, shedding light on the talents to be found behind prison walls and encouraging the public to take a second look.
Free and open to the public, the exhibition and surrounding educational events raise awareness and inspire dialogue between the incarcerated and the community at large. The public is invited to an opening reception on March 23th from 5:30 – 8 p.m. in the gallery. University of Michigan Provost Theresa Sullivan will join the curators of the exhibition along with the Director of the Michigan Department of Corrections, Patricia Caruso in addressing the gallery. Formerly incarcerated artists who have now re-entered into the community will also speak about what the show means to those in prison.
Participating artists express gratitude to organizers and gallery visitors alike, stressing the show’s impact on their lives and the community at large. “I believe that your program gives the public a glimpse into the type of things that inspire even the most downtrodden of us all” writes one artist. “When people see our work, for a few moments, they forget that this work was done by a felon, but by another human being. A human being who has the same thoughts, emotions, and inspirations as they do, and for that one moment, a major social and political barrier is shattered.”
Despite limited resources, exhibition artists create work in a rich range of styles, mediums, and themes. This year artists have also been asked to address the current economic situation in the state of Michigan visually if they so choose. Visitors return to the show year after year to glimpse art that is remarkable for its originality, beauty, and sheer expressive power. Last year, over 4,000 people came to the exhibit. Organizers expect even higher attendance this year and an exciting array of new work.
This year’s exhibition, curated by Professors Buzz Alexander, Janie Paul, and Jason Wright, exhibits work from over forty prisons throughout the state. The curators, PCAP Administrators Lashaun phoenix Moore, and Sari Adelson, along with various volunteers travel to these prisons to hand select the strongest work from the artists. As a result of this annual event, the amount of art created in Michigan prisons has increased dramatically, and Michigan prison artists have become national leaders, inspiring others to create art behind bars.
The Prison Creative Arts Project will be celebrating its 20th anniversary in conjunction with the 15th Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners. A symposium will be held at the University of Michigan’s Ann Arbor campus with a Keynote address being delivered by Marc Mauer of The Sentencing Project on March 26, 2010. Fellow practioners, Judith Tannebaum, Phyllis Kornfeld, Leslie Neal, and others, along with PCAP associates will hold panel discussions throughout the day on Saturday, March 27, 2010.
The exhibition is to be accompanied by the release of the 2nd Annual Literary Review of Creative Writing by Michigan Prisoners, readings of works from the publication by formerly incarcerated individuals are set to take place both in Ann Arbor and in the Detroit area, a screening of the film “Concrete, Steel, and Paint” and dialog with filmmakers will be held at the Michigan Theater, Natalie Holbrook from the American Friends Service Committee will address issues of Health Care inside Michigan’s Prisons, youth from Detroit will join us for a dialog about what’s on their minds, as they speak about their lives and their communities. For full listing of events please click here.
Exhibition hours are 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Tuesday – Saturday, and 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. Sunday – Monday.
For more information: call 734-647-7673, email email@example.com, or visit www.prisonarts.org
For 14th Annual Exhibition press release see this post.
Tuesday, March 24 Opening Reception
Join the Prison Creative Arts Project (PCAP) as we celebrate the opening of the 14th Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners. Formerly incarcerated artists, and Curators Buzz Alexander, Janie Paul, and Jason Wright, will address visitors to the gallery at 6:15 p.m. Free and open to the public.
5:30 – 8:00 p.m., Duderstadt Center Gallery, 2281 Bonisteel Blvd., Ann Arbor, MI
Wednesday, March 25
Bill Ayers Join us as Bill Ayers, Distinguished Professor of Education at the University of Illinois and Chicago Citizen of the Year, talks about the role of the arts, education, and activism in shaping our collective destinies. Bill Ayers is the author of several books on education and social justice and is the founder of Chicago’s Small Schools Workshop and the Center for Youth and Society.
7:30 p.m., Rackham Amphitheatre, 915 E. Washington St. Ann Arbor, MI
Thursday, March 26 The Michigan Review of Prisoner Creative Writing: Book Release and Celebration
PCAP and the 14th Annual Exhibition of Prisoner Art present an evening in celebration of PCAP’s first ever Michigan Review of Prisoner Creative Writing. Join us with guest editor and prisoner writing advocate and teacher Joseph Bathanti to enjoy selections of the beautiful and unabashed poetry, prose, and fiction of Michigan’s incarcerated writers. We come together on March 26th to celebrate and honor the talent and vison of these hidden voices with readings by recently released writers whose work has been featured.
7:00pm, Anderson Room, Michigan Union, 530 S. State St. Ann Arbor, MI
Friday, March 27 The Art of Social Change
Malaquias Montoya, a Professor at the University of California, Davis and renown Chicano artist, will present his latest exhibit, “Premeditated: Meditations on Capital Punishment.” This exhibit was inspired by Malaquias’s longstanding commitment to speaking out on behalf of those who are disadvantaged and oftentimes silenced by society. His art reveals the underlying racial and class injustices that are carried out through state sponsored execution, and his images are purposefully graphic so as to awaken audiences from their anesthetized response to capital punishment. In all of his work Malaquias sees it has his responsibility to comment on the culture of his time and create social change through art.
7:30 p.m., Henderson Room, Michigan League, 911 N. University Ave. Ann Arbor, MI
Saturday, March 28 Youth Speak
Please join us as a group of Detroit youth come together to discuss serious issues of urban living. It will be a facilitated dialogue with these bright young leaders about the challenges they face, and then an open discussion with all in attendance about these same challenges.
2:00 p.m., Room D, Michigan League, 911. N. University Ave. Ann Arbor, MI
Sunday, March 29 Artists Talkback Join us as a panel of formerly incarcerated artists discuss works in this year’s show and the process of creating art behind bars. The event is moderated by U of M’s School of Art and Design Professor, Janie Paul.
3-5 PM Duderstadt Center Gallery, 2281 Bonisteel Blvd., Ann Arbor MI
Wednesday, April 1 Tough Choices: A Look at the Complexities of the Michigan Parole and Commutation Board Join us for a conversation about the process by which the Michigan Parole and Commutation Board reach decisions determining whether a prisoner is ready to return to society.
4:00 p.m., Anderson Room A/B, Michigan Union, 530 S. State St. Ann Arbor, MI
Monday, April 6 Invisible Women: The Crisis of Incarcerated Mothers
Silja Talvi, investigative journalist, and author of Women Behind Bars: The Crisis of Women in the US Prison System, and Melissa Radcliff, Executive Director of Our Children’s Place, a residential initiative allowing young children to live with their incarcerated mothers, join us to discuss the intersections of incarceration and motherhood.
7:30pm, Rackham Assembly Hall, 915 E. Washington St., Ann Arbor, MI
Wednesday, April 8, 2009 Closing Reception
5:30 – 8:00 p.m., Duderstadt Center Gallery, 2281 Bonisteel Blvd., Ann Arbor
The residency will focus on hands-on classes in Creative Writing. There will also be time for “open studio” for the artist and the students to work on projects independently. This NEA residency is great for a skilled and well-rounded artist desiring a rewarding experience sharing their expertise with others. The impact on the lives of the inmates can be profound due to their willingness, gratefulness and unique perspectives.
Class hours and other terms are flexible and negotiable, afternoons and evenings are preferred. Duties are 10 hours/week of on-site teaching and class prep, as well as 2.5 hours for the artists’ own creative work. Stipend: $15,000. Candidate should have teaching and professional design experience. Previous work with inmate populations not required. Interviews to be conducted at the facility. All expenses paid Prison Arts training to be provided in California and thorough security training provided at the prison. Residency to begin three months after writer is selected to allow for processing of clearance information.
To apply, send a letter of interest with a resume or c.v., and 5-10 pages of writing samples to: Laurie Brooks, Prison Arts Project, Laurie@williamjamesassociation.org.