Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Dart Society Reports : The Grey Box

The Grey Box is a phenomenal documentary about the torture of solitary confinement. You can never fully grasp the life that these humans "live" trapped in a box. Although this documentary paints a very real picture of these men's lives, nothing can accurately depict the daily psychological torture that they faced for years!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Sacred Transformations

Sacred Transformation's Website
I just learned about this great organization yesterday! "The organization is dedicated to helping people transform tattoos or scars from negative experiences into marks of positive artistic expression." It is led by SAIC alumnus Eric Dean Spruth.

Taryn Simon - The Innocents

Taryn Simon's Art Work

1/12 - Charles Irvin FainScene of the crime, the snake River, Melba, Idaho
Served 18 years of a death sentence for Kidnapping, Rape and murder, 2002

"The Innocents documents the stories of individuals who served time in prison for violent crimes they did not commit. At issue is the question of photography's function as a credible eyewitness and arbiter of justice.

The primary cause of wrongful conviction is mistaken identification. A victim or eyewitness identifies a suspected perpetrator through law enforcement's use of photographs and lineups. This procedure relies on the assumption of precise visual memory. But, through exposure to composite sketches, mugshots, Polaroids, and lineups, eyewitness memory can change. In the history of these cases, photography offered the criminal justice system a tool that transformed innocent citizens into criminals. Photographs assisted officers in obtaining eyewitness identifications and aided prosecutors in securing convictions.

Simon photographed these men at sites that had particular significance to their illegitimate conviction: the scene of misidentification, the scene of arrest, the scene of the crime or the scene of the alibi. All of these locations hold contradictory meanings for the subjects. The scene of arrest marks the starting point of a reality based in fiction. The scene of the crime is at once arbitrary and crucial: this place, to which they have never been, changed their lives forever. In these photographs Simon confronts photography's ability to blur truth and fiction-an ambiguity that can have severe, even lethal consequences."

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Concrete, Steel, and Paint

I recently learned about this documentary and rushed home to look it up. All I could find was an amazing website and trailer. I watched the trailer and the film looks SO incredible! From what I understand about it, this group of prisoner works with a group of victims of crime to create a mural for the community. What a tough topic to take on! This shows the amazing power that art has to connect people and stimulate healing. I will be continuing to research how to see the full length of them film. It is truly inspiring to see people taking the initiative to start tackling these complex topics.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Troy Davis Story CNN (execution)

I think it is absolutely appaling that our Justice System can put a man to DEATH without concrete evidence. The fact that this happened and the Supreme Court wouldn't even re-open the case gives me absolutely no reason to trust that this system we have works. Please watch and educate yourself. This is a CNN report.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Ruth Gilmore and Beyond the Prison Industrial Complex

Ruth Wilson Gilmore is Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the Graduate Center, CUNY. Her publications include Golden Gulag: Prisons, Surplus, Crisis, and Opposition in Globalizing California (2007) — about which the San Francisco Chronicle said “Now, if you want to understand why progressive California leads the Western world with its regressive system of punishment, Gilmore’s “Golden Gulag” is the first must-read book of the 21st century”. She has also published How to Stop a Prison in Your Town (with the California Prison Moratorium Project collective); along with many articles and interviews. In addition to the California Prison Moratorium Project, she was a founding member of Critical Resistance; the Central California Environmental Justice Network (of which she is past president); and many other social justice organizations.

Ruthie Gilmore will be speaking at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC)  called “Beyond the Prison Industrial Complex: The World We Want is the World We Need.”
When: Monday September 26, 2011 at 5:30 followed by a reception at 7:30.
Where: Room 302 Student Center East at UIC. 750 S Halsted Street Chicago, IL 60607.
For more information, contact Institute for Research on Race and Public Policy (312) 996-6339 or the Jane Addams Hull House Museum (312) 413-5353.
Or you can email
All are welcome. This event is ADA accessible.
Sponsored by : Institute for Research on Race and Public Policy and Jane Addams Hull House Museum.

Beyond the Prison Industrial Complex Lecture Website

This Website is an AMAZING resource for anyone interested in the Prison System!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

"You can judge a society by the way it treats its prisoners" - Winston Churchill

This quote it ridiculously accurate! I just proposed to my Social Theory class at SAIC  that we discuss this topic sometime within the semester. With the incarceration boom in our country over the past 30 years, this topic becomes extremely relevant to our generation and something I feel strongly deserves the consideration and scrutiny of social theorist (professional and lay) everywhere!