Hallways of Hope is an exhibition inspired by a cross curricular project in the Midlands Prison Education Centre. This project aims to reach as many prisoners as possible in order to promote positivity, hope and mental health awareness. The resulting artworks emerged from the question ‘What does hope mean to me?’. The pieces are displayed on the walls of the prison and in the Education Centre.
The making of art is an inherently healthy and valuable thing to do. Being involved in a group project such as this is a way to avoid isolation and to reach out to a wider community. The art and craft works in themselves were intended to raise awareness of mental health issues and inspire hope. The theme of hope was broadly interpreted and as a result we have a diverse range of art works including mosaics, pottery, paintings, drawings and glass. The project is on-going and this exhibition represents a selection of the range of work produced by the participants.
Quotes from the opening:
“A little taste of the magic that happens at Dunamaise”
Michelle de Forge (director of the Dunamaise arts centre)
“…to provide a constant flow of positive activity. A small segment of what’s done in the prison”
Deirdre Dowling Head Teacher
“a great honour to bring the artwork inside these walls – very much open to showcase what’s going on in the prison in the Hallways of Hope. Working with people that the vast majority have never had a break in their lives. Really honoured to be here and greatly appreciate every effort – it’s not all about high walls & barbed wire it’s also human”
Governer Mark Mullen
“Education is the rock upon which citizenship is built. Education is the most important way that change can occur. In these works you can see where the teachers draws out the talent. All the pieces are made with love and care. Craft is very strong and some of the pieces rise magnificently above – compared sculpture of head to the Acropolis in Greece