Arts of Freedom project seeking examples of prison art to be used in a book

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Prison art work is a type of work that requires different rules and possibilities in terms of establishing contact, freedom of movement, opening certain topics and thinking carefully on its ethical dimensions, as well as keeping in mind the professional obligation to keep information, that artists might receive or the insights they gain while working in prison space, confidential.

Before they could start any artwork in prison space, artists involved in the project need to go through proper education. The Arts of Freedom project (led by Croatian group HDLU, with Erasmus funding) will produce and publish two educational books (manuals) explaining and displaying different aspects of artwork in the prison.

We are seeking images of existing art projects in prisons which could be used within these two books, which are being produced in partnership with practising art teachers from several countries. Please send all images and details to Ruth McFarlane, EPEA Projects Officer at projects@epea.org or contact Ruth for more details about what is required.

All materials produced by the project will be fully available to the public and all images used will be fully credited to the prison / administration / teacher (as appropriate).

The first book will be intended for artists who are interested in working in prison and the second book is intended primarily for staff employed in the prison system, but also for the general public. The aim of this book would be to raise awareness of the importance of artistic work in atypical spaces (penitentiaries, prison, hospitals,…) and the effects of such and similar projects (therapeutic and aesthetic effects on the observer).

The books will include chapters on topics such as :

  • Practices of prison art in Europe and World
  • Artwork in prison
  • Prison space, time and art: psychological and correctional contexts
  • Social impact of Artwork in prison
  • Benefits of Art Therapy in prisons
  • Contribution of Art and Culture in Prison
  • Importance of Aesthetics in prison space- Impact of art in prison space on employees
  • Psychological and correctional contexts of Art in Prison

If you have any materials on such topics or more, that could help in writing these chapters, please share them with us.

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