Norman Rockwell Museum Presents Cell Block Visions: Making and Teaching Art in Prison

Braulio Diez, "Condominium"

Braulio Diez, “Condominium.” Courtesy Phyllis Kornfeld.

Stockbridge, MA, March 17, 2017—As part of its Art for a Civil Society series of talks, Norman Rockwell Museum will present “Cell Block Visions: Making and Teaching Art in Prison” on Saturday, April 8, starting at 5:30 p.m. Artist/educator Phyllis Kornfeld will describe the compelling alternative art world that exists within the prison system.

The author of Cell Block Visions: Prison Art in America, Ms. Kornfeld has explored the creative process with incarcerated men and women for more than 30 years; her work has inspired many, with no previous training, who have turned to art for a sense of self-respect and respect for others, in order to find peace.

“I am convinced that art making is a natural human impulse and everybody has the potential,” notes Kornfeld. “I try not to get in the way of the inmate’s natural expression, no conventional ‘lessons’ or the imposition of my own concepts and techniques. So many of the prisoners are overtaken with creative force as soon as they get their hands on the materials, and all I have to do is get out of the way. With others, I have found ways to help them free themselves from their ideas.”

A reception will follow the talk. The program is free for Museum members, or included with regular Museum admission; program only: $10.