September 22, 2023


Make Some Fun

A Jail Artwork Group On the Energy of an Annual Exhibition in Michigan to Assist Extra Than 700 Incarcerated Artists — Colossal

2 min read


#Jail Artistic Arts Mission
#social justice

January 31, 2023

Grace Ebert

A painting of a man sitting in a reflective pool with broken steel bars in the foreground

“Self Portrait: Free Inside” by Jamal Biggs

As abolitionists and activists struggle to finish mass incarceration and the horrifying circumstances of life in U.S. prisons, people and organizations have taken it upon themselves to assist these trapped within the unjust system. The Jail Artistic Arts Mission has been enterprise such work for many years, bringing its group on the College of Michigan along with these instantly affected by the carceral system via workshops, studying alternatives, and an annual exhibition.

Artwork was an out-of-body expertise as a result of while you’re in that sort of atmosphere, there’s normally a variety of violence or only a bunch of unhappy stuff. Artwork was a pathway to freedom on the skin.—Josh Herrera

On this dialog, Colossal managing editor Grace Ebert speaks with two previously incarcerated artists, Johnny Van Patten and Josh Herrera, and college director Nora Krinitsky about how artistic practices perform whereas incarcerated, why exhibiting and promoting work is crucial to the method, and what the humanity of artwork means in a system constructed on dehumanization.

Learn the interview.


A painting of a fence in a green landscape

“Fence” by Kenneth Gourlay, a member of the Linkage Mission

A photo of a woman taking a photo of art on the wall of an exhibition

The 2022 exhibition ‘Shared Humanity.’ Photograph by Nathan Kennedy

#Jail Artistic Arts Mission
#social justice


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