An art exhibition of prisoner artworks will be on display at the Pumphouse Museum https://www.kingstonpumphouse.ca/ from July 4 – September 2, 2023 in partnership with the P4W memorial collective and the City of Kingston.
“The Art of Survival” brings together more than 30 local, national, and international artists and collectives who have produced artwork inside institutions for women or while on parole. This exhibition is part of P4WMC’s long-term project to remember and honour people who lived and died inside women’s prisons across Canada.
The exhibition’s title draws from a 1992 essay by artist, community organizer, and former P4W prisoner Gayle K. Horii, The Art In/of Survival;
In the 30 years since Horii’s declaration, it has become increasingly difficult for prisoners to create Art due to increasing restrictions by prison administration. Ongoing barriers include access to materials and cuts to arts programs that benefit the physical and psychological conditions of prisoners.
The Artworks displayed here explore the themes of love, community, spirituality, sisterhood, healing, survival, resistance, and resilience. The invited artists depict life in and beyond prison walls. In doing so, they counter the negative stereotypes of people caught in the prison system. P4WMC and its allies invite viewers to imagine a world that does not rely on the violence of prisons for community safety and accountability.
The Art of Survival is curated by the Prison for Women Memorial Collective (P4WMC) and Sheena Hoszko in collaboration with Heritage Services and the PumpHouse.