It took me some years to send my first personal letter to a prisoner after I had participated in some solidarity card writing projects. At that moment I never had thought I would ever do an art exhibition in collaboration with prisoners from death row within the United States of America.
It had been many little steps until I finally decided to give my fellow artists from the row a chance to free their art work from prison censorship and let them participate in my own art exhibitions.
Those photos which you are able to see inside this post are exhibition views of an art festival a couple of months after I had displayed for three times in different exhibitions art from prisoners. It was the first time when I did art collaborations and displayed them.
With the words of my friends through their postal letter I got educated how to do an art installation which is called “prison cell”. An art work which made people start crying or acting in any emotional way like I never experienced before during all these years as an artist who constantly showcases her work.
Also the collaborative work “Voices of Death Row Inmates” took the visitor’s attention so much that some came back a on the following days to show the work to their friends and family. Others came back another time because they needed a second view at one of the showcased art works or wanted to talk with me about my work.
None of my art project is meant to be hurting anyone nor is my intention to support crime and murder. I believe in the power of healing of art and do believe that every prisoner should have access to writing and artistic material in order to survive solitary confinement in a tiny cell.
I am thankful for the trust and friendship and respect all participating artists have in common. A huge thanks also to everybody who makes my art projects possible by donating stamps for our artist correspondence and interest in our work.
We are all human beings.
Human beings are doing mistakes.
One mistake does not define a person.
Contact me if you want me to bring collaborative art works with incarcerated artists, art about prison and art made in prison to your town and do an art show with a lecture about art through prison bars!
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