Barring Freedom at San José Museum of Art

October 30, 2020- April 25, 2021

  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: Sherrill Roland, Contraband series, 2019. Razor, ink pen cartridge, cinnamon floss, paperclip. Jumpsuit Project, 2016–ongoing. Jumpsuit on wooden hanger, four framed photographs, orange duct tape. (Image 1 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: American Artist, Blue Life Seminar, 2019. HD video. I’m Blue, 2019. School desk, hardware, ballistic shield. blue are the words i say and what i think, 2019. Aluminum, wood, hardware, and navy blue fabric. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 2 of 13)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. Deana Lawson, Mohawk Correctional Facility, 2012-2014. Digital prints. Ashley Hunt, Degrees of Invisibility, 2013–ongoing. Installation of framed and unframed prints, stacks of newspaper, and shipping crates. (Image 3 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: Sherrill Roland, Contraband series, 2019. Jumpsuit Project, 2016–ongoing. Titus Kaphar and Reginald Dwayne Betts, Redaction Project, 2019. Etching and silkscreen on paper. Sonya Clark, Edifice and Mortar, 2018. Hand-stamped bricks, human hair, and glass. Three-fifths, 2010. Cloth and thread. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 4 of 12)
  • Detail of Sonya Clark, Edifice and Mortar, 2018. Hand-stamped bricks, human hair, and glass. Courtesy of the artist. (Image 5 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. Chandra McCormick, Men Going to Work in the Fields of Angola, 2014. Archival pigment print. (Image 6 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. Dread Scott, Stop, 2012. 2-channel HD video. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 7 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: Sharon Daniel, Undoing Time/Amends/Excessive Force, 2020. Embroidered American Flag. Levester Williams, Tar Ball, 2014. Unclean bed sheets from a Virginian adult penitentiary, tar, flies, other media. Dread Scott, Stop, 2012. 2-channel HD video. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 8 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: Sanford Biggers, Infinite Tabernacle, HD video installation, carpet. BAM (Seated Warrior), 2016. Polished bronze. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 9 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: Patrice Renee Washington, Anti-Grip Supremacist Resistance Trainer 5000, 2016. Glazed stoneware. Coded Mechanisms, 2017. Glazed ceramic, chain, PVC, and hardware. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 10 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: Sadie Barnette, FBI Drawings: No Violence, 2020. Graphite on paper. Ashley Hunt, Degrees of Invisibility, 2013–ongoing. Installation of framed and unframed prints, stacks of newspaper, and shipping crates. jackie sumell, The House That Herman Built, 2008. Cell, letters, architectural model, audio, drawing. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 11 of 12)
  • Installation photography of Barring Freedom. From left to right: Chandra McCormick, Untitled (wrestling the bull), 2013. Archival pigment print. Untitled (people in the stand), 2013. Archival pigment print. Waiting for the bull, men waiting to participate in the Angola rodeo, 2013. Archival pigment print. Sonya Clark, Edifice and Mortar, 2018. Hand-stamped bricks, human hair, and glass. Sharon Daniel, Undoing Time/PLEDGE, 2013. Mixed-media installation with video. Photo by J. Arnold, Impart Photography. (Image 12 of 12)

Barring Freedom is a group exhibition of contemporary art collaboratively organized by UC Santa Cruz Institute of the Arts and Sciences (IAS) and San José Museum of Art.

Curated by Dr. Rachel Nelson and Alexandra Moore, Barring Freedom features works which aim to challenge the dominant ways people see and understand the complex nexus of policing, surveillance, detention, and imprisonment that makes up the nation’s prison industrial complex. With more than two million incarcerated people, a majority of them black or bBarring Freedomhem from poor communities, the prison industrial complex reveals a troubled vision at the heart of the United States. Barring Freedom considers the strategies artists use to reveal this unjust worldview and confront the social problems it serves to obscure.

Artists: American Artist, Sadie Barnette, Sanford Biggers, Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick, Sonya Clark, Sharon Daniel, Maria Gaspar, Ashley Hunt, Dee Hibbert-Jones and Nomi Talisman, Titus Kaphar and Reginald Dwayne Betts, Deana Lawson, Sherrill Roland, Dread Scott, jackie sumell, Hank Willis Thomas, Patrice Renee Washington, Prison Renaissance, and Levester Williams

Watch Angela Davis and Gina Dent in conversation with Rachel Nelson about art, abolition, and imagining a world without prisons at San José Museum of Art.

WEB RESOURCE

Video interviews with the artists, thematic study guides, an archive of related "Visualizing Abolition" programs, "Music for Abolition", a special series of music videos curated by Terri Lyne Carrington, as well as other resources are available here.

SOLITARY GARDEN

Solitary Garden is a participatory public sculpture and garden project at UC Santa Cruz created by award-winning artist jackie sumell in collaboration with Tim Young, currently on Death Row in San Quentin State Prison as he fights to prove his innocence in the California appellate court system. Learn more about the project here.

SUPPORT

Barring Freedom is supported by the SJMA Exhibitions Fund, with contributions from Glenda and Gary Dorchak and Rita and Kent Norton. The exhibition is made possible with generous support from the Nion McEvoy Family Trust, Ford Foundation, Future Justice Fund, Wanda Kownacki, Peter Coha, James L. Gunderson, Rowland and Pat Rebele, Porter College, UC Santa Cruz Foundation, and annual donors to the Institute of the Arts and Sciences.

PRESS

A Critical View of the Criminal Justice System, Through Artists’ Eyes, Hyperallergic
November 18, 2020

A Death row inmate designs garden installation by instructing university students through letters, The Art Newspaper
January 8, 2021

Exhibits convey incarcerated artists’ spirit: ‘No matter what I did … there’s beauty inside me’, SF Chronicle Datebook
March 17, 2021

10 artists who shed light on mass incarceration , SF Chronicle Datebook
March 17, 2021

A The ‘Cult' and Contradictions of the American Flag, NBC LX
March 26, 2021

A Museum Highlights, SF/ARTS
March 30, 2021

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Prisons, Histories, and Erasures with Joanne Barker, Maria Gaspar, and Kelly Lytle Hernández
Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Prisons and Poetics with Reginald Dwayne Betts and Craig Haney
Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Surveillance and Cinematics with American Artist, Simone Browne and Ruha Benjamin
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Material and Memory: Sanford Biggers and Leigh Raiford
Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Abolitionist Feminisms with Beth Ritchie, Erica Meiners, and Sonya Clark
Tuesday, February 23, 2021

(Re)Enacting Revolution with Dread Scott and Erin Gray
Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Futures with Sora Han, adrienne maree brown and Savannah Shange
Tuesday, May 11, 2021

 

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