From Behind the Wall – Expressions from Prison
It is The Art Loft’s dream that everyone gets to experience the amazing power of art, including the less advantaged, outlying sectors of the community. To this end, Kathryn Matlack spearheaded art classes at the Maine State Prison. Kathryn found that there was an art program at the prison solely founded by inmates. No outside instruction was available. The inmates were eager to learn and progress in their artistic abilities.
It was decided that The Art Loft would hire Dan Daly to come into the prison to teach once a week. He brought along his witty story telling, an endless supply of art books and magazines to learn from, as well as examples of his own art. Continuing lessons are held weekly focusing on process and art theory.
What is it like to be incarcerated? The website ‘Prison Fellowship’ states, “Understanding a prisoner’s thinking and emotional state can help us minister to them more effectively. The five stages of incarceration—denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance—are derived from the traditional stages of grief outlined by American Swiss psychiatrist, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross.
These stages are not necessarily linear since people can flow in and out of them. But often a prisoner’s behavior can be explained by where they are within these stages. Like everyone, prisoners are in process, and are responding to what is happening in their lives.”
This show, ‘From Behind the Wall,’ is about those feelings, a personal perspective from each individual.
The Art Loft will display works of art from the inmates at their Rockland Art Walk opening on October 6th. Also on display at this show will also be a life size carving of an eagle. The eagle was made in the Industries Woodshop, an impressive 110 person operation at the Maine State Prison. “Industries” has also made all the frames for the paintings in this show. Along with the paintings, the sketchbooks will be displayed as well as written heartfelt statements from each inmate regarding their lives and their art.
Warden Randall Liberty will be at The Art Loft during the October 6th Art Walk opening and will be giving a talk at 5:00 pm about the art program at the prison and be on hand to answer questions. Dan Daly will also be available to talk with as well.
Show opens October 6, 5-8pm and can also be seen during class times and by appointment throughout October. For more information visit artloftrockland.org The Art Loft 385 Main Street, Suite 9, Rockland, 207-200-7915