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College of Humanities & Social Sciences

Windows on Death Row: Art from Inside and Outside the Prison Walls

The event is sponsored by: Consul General of Switzerland in Atlanta and Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights. The exhibition team includes: project founders Anne-Frédérique Widmann and Patrick Chappatte and curator and project manager, Anne Hromadka. The exhibit is hosted by: O'Kane Gallery at University of Houston - Downtown, and the University of Houston - Downtown College of Public Service. Attendees will view more than 70 artworks by people living on Death Row and by top editorial cartoonists in a one-of-a-kind exhibition.

About the project:
There are currently 3,014 Americans awaiting execution. California has 745, making it the largest death row of any state. Although a majority of Americans still approve of capital punishment, those numbers have begun to decline. Several high-profile DNA-based exonerations of death row inmates, a recent string of botched executions, and an increased concern over patterns of racial discrimination have contributed to a growing discussion about the effectiveness, as well as the human and financial costs of the death penalty.

The inmates whose work is included in the show were asked to draw and paint their daily lives and personal experiences in prison. Widmann and Chappatte visited maximum security prisons, organized an art workshop on death row, and received works from inmates incarcerated in Texas, California, Georgia, North Carolina, Arkansas, Kansas, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee.

The founders also invited a dozen of America’s top political cartoonists to share their take on the issue. Among those featured are: Pat Oliphant and Jeff Danziger (syndicated worldwide), David Horsey (Los Angeles Times), Jack Ohman (Sacramento Bee), KAL (The Economist, Baltimore Sun), Mike Luckovich (Atlanta Constitution), Ann Telnaes (Washington Post), Matt Wuerker (Politico), Joel Pett (Lexington Herald-Leader), Clay Bennett (Chattanooga Times Free Press), Rob Rogers (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette), and Scott Stantis (Chicago Tribune). Their work offers a sharp and witty point of view on the ongoing debate about capital punishment in America.

The resulting collection of work offers testimonies and insights from a world that is beyond our imaginations.  

This event is free to attend, please register to attend.

Last updated 6/13/2017 4:46 AM