PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — In accordance with Nicole Fleetwood, spending time in jail can essentially change the way in which an individual sees the world.
Fleetwood, a media and tradition scholar at New York College, needed extra Individuals to know that. So she curated a touring exhibition of artwork made by people who find themselves incarcerated, alongside artwork by others whose lives have been affected by the carceral system not directly — permitting the general public to see how imprisonment can actually alter views. The exhibition debuted at New York Metropolis’s MoMA PS1 in 2020.
This fall, the critically acclaimed present is headed to Brown College, the place it is going to be on show on the David Winton Bell Gallery and the Cohen Gallery. Referred to as “Marking Time: Artwork within the Age of Mass Incarceration,” it options work, sculptures, pictures and different works that make clear the monumental affect of the prison justice system on all elements of American society.
The free, public exhibition opens on Friday, Sept. 16, on the Bell and Cohen galleries and runs by Sunday, Dec. 18. A handful of talks and different occasions held all through Fall 2022, co-hosted by the Brown Arts Institute, the Division of Africana Research and different scholarly hubs throughout campus, will accompany the exhibition.
Students estimate that the variety of Individuals held in prisons and jails tops 2 million — greater than some other nation, each per capita and in absolute numbers. However Fleetwood mentioned incarcerated individuals aren’t the one ones who’ve been reworked by america’ system of punishment and imprisonment.
“I feel one of the crucial insidious ways in which the carceral system impacts most individuals within the U.S. is by the convenience with which we settle for punitive governance as a lifestyle,” Fleetwood mentioned. “We reside underneath the fixed menace of being punished for every kind of issues large and small — not paying a invoice on time, sending our kids to high school late, not submitting a type in a sure approach. So whereas many hundreds of thousands may not be struggling behind bars, they’re nonetheless very a lot a part of this method that enables for the struggling of these held captive.”
That’s why, she mentioned, she believes it’s necessary for all Individuals to know how interactions with police, courts and correctional amenities can set off an internal shift. Most of the artists within the exhibition contact on how incarceration has altered their notion of the passage of time or modified their relationships to bodily areas.
Washington D.C. artist Larry Prepare dinner, for instance, depicts the distinctive frustration of dwelling a life principally faraway from family members and acquainted environment in “The Visiting Room #2,” a photograph included within the exhibition. The principle topic of the picture is a Black man wearing a mixture of jail garb and streetwear, symbolizing the way in which wherein incarcerated individuals can really feel caught between two worlds whereas speaking to household and pals in jail visiting rooms. Within the picture, the person gazes at an airbrushed cityscape backdrop, symbolizing prisoners’ frequent tendency to hunt escape by idealizing recollections from the previous or dreaming of a happier future.