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Tue, May 16


Coburn Free Library, Owego, NY

Behind the Wall: Art and Writing from Prison

Exhibition provides a glimpse into the lives, hearts, minds, and imaginations of incarcerated people around the country

Behind the Wall: Art and Writing from Prison
Behind the Wall: Art and Writing from Prison

Time & Location

May 16, 2023, 2:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Coburn Free Library, Owego, NY, 275 Main St, Owego, NY 13827, USA

About this event

Nearly 2 million Americans live in jails, prisons, and detention centers, all but invisible to the rest of the world. This exhibit provides a glimpse into some of their lives, hearts, minds, and imaginations.

Organized by Story House Ithaca, “Behind the Wall” is a traveling exhibition of drawings, paintings, letters, stories, and poems produced by people in prison. It includes 140 works by 90 incarcerated individuals from detention facilities in 22 states. There is a letter-writing station where visitors can send feedback directly to the participating artists.

The artworks and writings in “Behind the Wall” have been collected by Prisoner Express, a project of Durland Alternatives Library at Cornell, and curated by Newfield-based artist Treacy Ziegler. Both Story House Ithaca and Prisoner Express are projects of the Ithaca-based nonprofit Center for Transformative Action.

The exhibition will be on display in Coburn Free Library for the entire month of May. It will travel to Cortland Free Library in June. It spent February at the Tompkins County Public Library in Ithaca and March at Seymour Library in Auburn. 

“Behind the Wall” is supported by a grant from Humanities New York

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