Member Preview of Prison Nation Exhibition
Wednesday, February 7
7:00 p.m. EDT
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Aperture requests the pleasure of your company at an exhibition preview reception on Wednesday, February 7, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m., for Prison Nation. A public panel discussion, Narratives from Inside, featuring Nigel Poor, Virginia Grise, and Virgilio Bravo will take place immediately following the preview.
6:00 p.m.– Introduction by Aperture magazine editor Michael Famighetti and contributing editor Nicole R. Fleetwood
7:00–8:30 p.m.– Public panel discussion, Narratives from Inside, featuring Nigel Poor, Virginia Grise, Vee Bravo, and Russell Craig. Moderated by Shani Jamila
Most prisons and jails across the United States do not allow prisoners to have access to cameras. At a moment when 2.2 million people are incarcerated in the US, 3.8 million people are on probation, and 870,000 former prisoners are on parole, how can images tell the story of mass incarceration when the imprisoned don’t have control over their own representation? How can photographs visualize a reality that disproportionately affects people of color, and, for many, remains outside of view?
This exhibition coincides with the publication of “Prison Nation,” Aperture magazine’s spring issue organized with the scholar Nicole R. Fleetwood, an expert on art’s relation to incarceration. Addressing the unique role photography plays in creating a visual record of a national crisis, this exhibition and issue are accompanied by a series of six public programs—featuring speakers such as Nigel Poor, Aliya Hana Hussain, Keith Calhoun, Chandra McCormich, Jamel Shabazz, Deborah Luster, Bruce Jackson, Shani Jamila, Jesse Krimes, Sable Elyse Smith, Joseph Rodriguez, and more—all to take place at Aperture Foundation’s gallery.
Aperture magazine’s “Prison Nation” issue and the related exhibition and programs are funded, in part, with generous lead support from the Ford Foundation, as well as funding from the Reba Judith Sandler Foundation. Additional funding is provided by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the Grace Jones Richardson Trust, and the Board of Trustees and Members of Aperture Foundation. Additional public funds are from the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.
Image: Sable Elyse Smith, from Landscapes & Playgrounds (Sming Sming Books, 2017)