Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Art By Offenders - Koestler Trust

Spoiler Alert : Not beer related

Earlier in the summer, I was chosen as one of the JP volunteer curators of this year's Koestler Trust annual exhibition showcasing Art by Offenders.

Each year the Koestler Trust hosts an awards competition of visual arts, film, music and writing by prisoners and others in secure settings.

This year the competition attracted entries from UK prisons, secure hospitals, immigration detention centres, youth offending services, probation and British prisoners serving overseas. The total entry was over 7,000 pieces.

My part in the process was to spend three weeks selecting about 150 pieces worthy of display from a total entry of visual arts of about 5,000. It was a real test of group decision making and selection by committee but I am really proud of the end result which is now available for all to see.

The exhibition opens today at 1pm (21 September) in the basement space (Spirit Level) of the Royal Festival Hall on the Southbank, SE1 8XX. It is free to get in and runs until 20 November. Opening hours are 10am to 10pm. More details at

Please drop in for a few minutes if you are passing through Central London or make a special visit. I know I am a bit biased but I guarantee you will be glad that you did.

If anyone would like me to join their visit to give a curator's perspective, let me know. I would be glad to come if my diary is free - daytime or evenings.

Finally, I can't resist putting a beer spin on this : Meantime bottles are available at the Royal Festival Hall bars and the Harp, CAMRA's national pub of the year is about a fifteen minute walk across the river. There is also a pretty good pub walk to be done nowadays along the Strand.

1 comment:

Real Ale Girl said...

Also pretty close to the Kernel brewery. Well done on this- I saw it last year and it was moving as well as beautiful. Nice one, curator!