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“Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration” Continues at The Schomburg Center Through December 4, 2023

The hugely impactful exhibition, Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration — previously featured in ART BreakOUT when it debuted at MoMA PS1 in Long Island City — can now be seen at The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. A searing indictment of our country’s prison system, it is also a celebration of the human spirit in the face of adversary. Curated by Dr. Nicole R. Fleetwood, along with Steven G. Fullwood  and Novella Ford, it features a range of works in different media by artists who have been or are currently incarcerated, as well as by those whose works address the multi-faceted topic.

The image pictured above, Black Joy Tapestry, was fashioned by Ndume Olatushani who spent twenty years on death row and a total of 27 years in prison for a crime he did not commit. Creating art was essential to his survival, and now that he is out of prison, he not only makes art, but, also, works with advocacy groups to “challenge misconceptions” and end capital punishment.

Several more images of works on view at The Schomburg Center follow:

Formerly incarcerated artist Russell Craig, Segment from “I Am Groot,” Acrylic on textiles and leather purse fragments portraying the artist as he sits quietly contemplating his past in the prison system

San Quentin State Prisonincarcerated multi-media artist Gary Harrell“Deep Thought” 2013, Linocut and acrylic on paper

Formerly incarcerated multidisciplinary artist Jared Owens, “Series 111, #5,” 2022, Mixed media on panel, soil from prison yard at F.C.I. Fairton, lino printing

The late formerly incarcerated artist Ronnie Goodman, “San Quentin Arts in Corrections Art Studio,” 2008, Acrylic on canvas

Pennsylvania-based formerly incarcerated artist Mark Loughney, “Pyrrhic Defeat: A Visual Study of Mass Incarceration,” 2014–present, close-up from a series of hundreds of graphite drawings on paper of fellow inmates

The exhibition can be viewed Monday–Saturday, 10 AM–6 PM, through December 4 at The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, located at Malcolm X Boulevard and 135th Street. Information on accompanying free talks and programs can be found here.

Photos: Lois Stavsky