Turner Contemporary teams up with probation service for unique exhibition

Pi Equals 3 created at the Bracton Centre

A unique partnership has been launched which will involve people on probation in the south east curating a new exhibition at Turner Contemporary.

People serving community sentences or who have recently been released from prison will work with local artist and project lead Trish Scott, to curate an exhibition for spring 2019. They will select from over 700 pieces created by people in prisons, young offender institutions, secure hospitals and others on probation across Kent and Sussex.

It’s the result of a partnership between Kent, Surrey and Sussex Community Rehabilitation Company (KSS CRC), the agency responsible for supporting and supervising low and medium risk offenders in the region, and the Koestler Trust, the UK’s best-known prison arts charity.

Around ten participants are taking part in eight sessions this month and December as part of efforts to rehabilitate and integrate them more closely with civic life and their community.

The exhibition opens on March 1, 2019.

KSS CRC chief executive, Suki Binning (pictured), said: “This project at a world-leading gallery is part of our efforts to develop new ways to engage the people we work with effectively. It will give them an opportunity to develop teamworking skills, a sense of worth about what they can achieve and reflect on how they can make more positive choices in the future.

“We are delighted to partner with the Koestler Trust and Turner Contemporary. This exhibition promises to be an eye-opener for the people we supervise, their families and the wider community and I hope that people from every walk of life are able to come and see this art which is so often hidden from view.”

Turner Contemporary head of learning and visitor experience, Karen Eslea, added:“We are delighted to be working with KSS CRC and the Koestler Trust on this exciting project. We are always looking for new and exciting ways to make art accessible to all and I am sure some fascinating insights and perspectives will come from the curators of this exhibition.”

Koestler Trust chief executive officer, Sally Taylor, said: “This is our first regional show in the south east and we’re thrilled that Turner Contemporary will be the setting for Koestler artwork, in the same year as the gallery hosts the prestigious Turner Prize. To have service users from KSS CRC as the curators adds another layer of meaning to this project, and we’re very much looking forward to seeing the exhibition emerge from their efforts and ideas.”