february 2017



INCARCERATION

February 4 thru March 11, 2017


Opening Reception: Saturday, February 4, 2017, 6-10pm

Poetry, Bonfire Shout!: February 25th, 6:30pm

Panel Disussions March 4th, 2-6pm

Closing Reception: Saturday, March 4, 2017, 6-10pm


Curators: Pat Sparkuhl, Gregg Stone, Leslie Davis

 

Featured Artists:

Gabriel Sosa, Kat Flyn, Sally Briggs, Onnie Strother, Ben Zask, Joshua Correa, Eva Andry, Jesi Pace-Berkeley, Kamal Al Mansour, Michael Fischerkeller, Karin Swildens, Margi Weir, Camilo Cruz, Jennifer Lugris, Jorg Dubin, Zach Mendoza, Rich Smukler, Gregory Price, Dalia Hay Acco, Riley Waite, A.S. Ashley, Victoria Hanks, Ruben Acosta, Barbara Pieper, Karim Shuquem, John Rosewall, Mariona Barkus, Hiroko, Bradford Salamon, Abe Moya, Fabian Debora, Evalynn Alu, Gary Simpson, Leslie Davis, Janet Dreyer, Gregg Stone, Sandra Campbell, Pat Sparkuhl, Kebe Fox, Oscar Campos, Beverly Jacobs, Kurt Weston, Emma Flowers, Jay Z, Molly Crabapple, Brian Stevenson

 

“If you would seek vengeance above all else, be sure to dig two graves.” - Greek proverb



Eva Andry, Americas Most Unwanted 2

 

The U.S. now confines more than 2.2 million people in its prisons. This amounts to 1.2% percent of its population, more than any other country and eight times more per capita than Russia. Our incarcerated citizens have become a shadow nation, hidden and often forgotten. This shadow nation is supported by a budget estimated at 64 billion annually, or nearly 6% of our gross national product. Incarceration has become a big and rigorously privatized business. Our current approach has produced a profitable if brutal cycle: poverty and the absence of economic opportunity funnel individuals into crime, prisons militate against rehabilitation, convicts re-offend following release, and after arrest are returned to prison as compliant recidivists. As a result, U.S. recidivism rates are now at 68% and increase every year. In this environment, it's hard to tell where justice ends and vengeance begins.

How did we get here? Starting in the 1970’s, our prison population underwent rapid and unprecedented growth. In 2016, we house 700% more prisoners than we did in 1970. This increase happened in spite of steady decreases in violent crime. The growth of the prison population was fueled by the mandatory minimum sentences of the “War on Drugs”, and the accompanying “tough on crime” legislation. Prisoners are now overwhelmingly African-American and Latino, and the majority have been imprisoned for non-violent offenses. Many struggle with drug addiction and mental illness. Prisons in a single state, California, now house more of the mentally ill and drug addicted than all of the hospitals in America.

As grim as this situation appears, there are proven and equitable models for reform. In rebuke to our badly broken justice system, Germany, Norway, Denmark, and Sweden provide examples of what compassionate, evidenced-based approaches to crime and punishment can accomplish. These countries achieve exceptionally low rates of crime and recidivism with lower total and per capita expenditures. All of them provide intensive rehabilitation programs for inmates in an environment modeled closely on the communities where they will be reintegrated. This is followed by extensive coordinated support services after release.

Any path to reform will begin with a demand for justice: justice for the incarcerated, for their families, and for communities devastated by the loss of essential members. We have reached a critical moment in the struggle for a better criminal justice system. It is crucial that the chorus of voices making this demand includes artists and that these artists be willing to wield the power of art to inform, to inspire, and to heal.

Leslie Diane Davis

 

 


hiroko, #15. Bronze, Glass & Steel. 36 x 46 x 65

 

 

Special Events During Incarceration

 


Bonfire Shout!: poetry, music, art & life

WHEN // February 25th, 2017
[6:30pm to 9:00pm]

WHERE // OCCCA (Orange County Center for Contemporary Arts)
[117 N. Sycamore St, Santa Ana, CA. 92701]

FEATURING POETRY & SPOKEN WORD PERFORMANCES BY//
Mahsa Hosseini -- Danielle Mitchell -- Elizabeth Isela Szekeresh
Natalie J. Graham -- Victoria Lynne McCoy -- Angela Apodaca
Chestina Craig -- Sheila J. Sadr -- Keayva Mitchell
& Elmast Kozloyan

DETAILS // $10 @ Door ($5 w/ Student ID)
[All Ages - adult language, Casual Attire]
[Refreshsments @ Concession Counter]
[Parking: Street (metered) / Garage (cash only) @ W. 3rd & N. Sycamore]

HOSTED BY // Marcus Omari

MUSIC BY // Carla Zarate

THEME // Incarceration - Freedom - Inspiration - Healing

“If you are free, you are not predicatable and you are not controllable.” ~ June Jordan

*****presented by OCCCA / PRP production*****

 

“INCARCERATION CRISIS”
PANEL FORUM  Q&A #1

MARCH 4TH  2pm-4pm


Panel Moderator:

Leslie Diane Davis is a transformative sculptor whose work focuses on the role of art in response to social, environmental, and biological crises. After extensive training under Dale Chihuly at Pilchuck Studios, Leslie’s early work concentrated on the tension between biological forms and abstract ideas. Her pioneering 2003 exhibition “Worlds in Collision” marked the beginning of the “third culture” movement integrating art and science. Her latest project, “Incarceration”, explores how art can render the experience of imprisonment and inspire comprehensive criminal justice reform.

 

Panel Speakers:

Christine L.Montonna retired after twenty years with the Federal Bureau of Prisons as an Associate Warden. Upon retirement, Christine moved to Southern California and discovered the Orange County  Collaborative Courts and the Collaborative Courts Foundation, a nonprofit whose mission is to support and promote the success of individuals participating in the Collaborative Courts programs.  She has served on the Collaborative Courts Foundation Board for the past four years and is a passionate advocate of therapeutic rather than punitive justice.  While working for the BOP, she was shocked and saddened by the rapid increase in the inmate population and the construction boom of new prisons.  However, not until reading Michelle Alexander's The New Jim Crow, did she begin to understand the dynamic behind those increases.  Bryan Stevenson's Just Mercy served as further enlightenment of how unjust our justice system truly is.  After a career working for the system, she is dedicated to changing it.

Pat Sparkuhl My concern is making artwork that has its own fingerprint. I attempt to explore images that reflect my relationship to issues that I feel are relevant. I seek out unique and personal ways of integrating the various ingredients for my compositions, attempting to develop for the viewer an attitude of curiosity and discussion when viewing a particular artwork. 

Curator of exhibits; Festival of Arts & Community Art Project at Wells Fargo Bank, Laguna Beach, Ca.Committee Member; Artists Advisory, Exhibits & Jury Formation, Permanent Collection, Festival of Arts, Laguna Beach, Ca “Photography and Jurying Seminar”, Festival of Arts, Laguna Beach, Ca.

 
Mando Yearwood Cordova is a retired Gang Enforcement detective in Long Beach CA. His intention is to raise wariness and understanding among our citizens on the matter of police procedures; a very important topic in our country at this time. He will explain why certain things are done in a certain way across the Nation, by Law Enforcement. He will address changes that he feels 
can be implemented in Police Departments that could make a world of difference on the outcome of some police encounters. Keeping us all safe and informed is his main objective.

Hon. Joe T. Perez  is a judge for the Superior Court of Orange County. He was appointed by former governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in December 2010 to fill a newly created seat on the court. He formerly served as a commissioner for the Orange County Superior Court from 2007-2010. He was a deputy public defender for the Orange County Public Defender’s Office from 1995 to 2007 and a sole practitioner in 1995. Judge Perez has overseen several of the court’s collaborative justice court programs including mental health, homeless and veterans courts. He now sits in an open trial court. Judge Perez earned a Juris Doctorate degree from Southwestern University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Jeff Elias is a retired  Public Defender, County of San Diego Supervising Attorney of the Mental Health Division. Responsibilities include staff development, supervision, case management and community relations.  I was a resource for other attorneys and agencies, advising of procedures relating to mental health issues and psychiatric defenses. In addition, I helped to develop and continued to be a Team member for the Behavioral Health Court, functioning as the principal screener and the legal representative for all participants. I retired on December 6, 2012 and currently work with agencies, individuals and organizations as a consultant in reference to mental health law, involuntary civil commitments, community reentry programs, behavioral health courts and a variety of competency issues.

Fabian Debora  is currently a Director of substance abuse services and programming/counselor and mentor at Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles and works in collaboration with LPAN (Latino Producers Action Network). As a Director of Arts Department and is also on the governing council of Arts for Incarcerated Youth Network, and instructor between community artists in Boyle Heights and students in the classroom.

Fabian continues to use art as a vehicle to communicate and educate and touch people throughout his journey.  By conceptualizing and interpreting his personal experiences as well as the experiences of his community, Fabian believes that he too can effect change.  He is determined to continue to expand his horizons and to fully and honestly express himself through his art.

 

Video of forum in 4 parts


 

Boca de Oro: Art & Literature Festival

Incarceration Crisis:"Overcoming Recidivism" and Fluent Words of Love

Panel Forum Q&A #2


MARCH 4th 4:30 pm - 6pm


Panel Moderators: Claudia Ramirez & Dylan Thompson

 

Panel Speakers:

BMOC-Boys and Men of Color- (Abraham Medina, Ignacio)

Central Santa Ana is one of 13 places in California, including Boyle Heights, South Los Angeles and Long Beach, that are part of a 10-year, $1 billion California Endowment initiative to rebuild healthier communities. The California Endowment identified that at the intersection of place and race boys and young men of color are the population most deeply impacted by health disparities.The organizers are part of the local branch of Boys and Men of Color movement in California that aims to decrease the youth detention rate and help young men succeed in school and work


Friends of OC Detainees/Civic- ( Christina Fallow, Ellen, Jan Meslin)

By our actions, we seek to honor equity and justice in human relations, and respect the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part, by a strong, vibrant visitation program of undocumented people placed in detention centers in Orange County, California. A growing number of caring people from Orange County, California, are currently visiting people in detention at James A. Musick, a minimum security prison in Irvine, and at the Santa Ana City Jail and in the near future Theo Lacy in Orange. Our visitation program is approved by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). People in detention request visitors using a signup sheet posted in their dorms. The names of the people in detention are distributed to visitors, primarily according to language spoken. Spanish visitors are in great demand, but people in detention often speak enough English to enjoy the visit of an English-speaking visitor, too.


New Earth Life- (Joey Linnert, Alyesha Wise, Mathew Cuban)

New Earth provides mentor-based arts, educational, and vocational programs that empower juvenile justice and system involved youth ages 13-25 to transform their lives, move toward positive, healthier life choices, and realize their full potential as contributing members of our community.


360 Turn Around- (Nancy Alcala)

Our mission is to turn around high rates of youth incarceration by creating a diversion program that will engage parents and youth in facilitating change in their lives and communities.


Santa Ana Unified School District Trustee (Valerie Amezcua)

Amezcua has served our community as an education advocate, a parent, a supervising probation officer, and a city commissioner. Supervising Probation Officer for the Orange County Probation Department where she has been employed since January 1986.  During her public service career of 28 years, she has been responsible for training, motivating, and supervising deputized and professional staff. She has worked in a specialized assignment with local law enforcement for seven years, supervising violent offenders in the Tri-Agency Regional Gang Enforcement Team (TARGET). In 2001, as a Supervising Probation Officer, Valerie returned to work in her area of expertise: gang intervention and prevention. Her experience includes assisting with re-establishing and implementing the Youth Reporting Center in Santa Ana and was the Orange County Probation Department’s first Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative Coordinator (JDAI), working directly with the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the W. Haywood Burns Institute. Currently, she is assigned to the AB109/ Postrelease Community Supervision Division.

Valerie has extensive experience in community-based juvenile justice reform, gang prevention and intervention, implementing restorative justice practices, and is a Certified Peace Mediator. She is active within her community, previously serving on numerous boards, including the Human Relations Commission and the Early Prevention & Intervention Commission (EPIC) for the City of Santa Ana. She attended California State University, Long Beach and is the proud mother of Mickel Melendrez.

Valerie was elected to the Santa Ana Unified School District’s Board of Education on November 4, 2014.


FLOW/ Fluent Words of Love- Wise, Cuban

Time: 5:30-6:00pm

Theme: Spoken Word by New Earth Life Group Fluent Words of Love

 


Michael Fischerkeller, Glimmer of Hope (Criminal Justice Reform)

 

About the Curators:

Pat Sparkuhl My concern is making artwork that has its own fingerprint. I attempt to explore images that reflect my relationship to issues that I feel are relevant. I seek out unique and personal ways of integrating the various ingredients for my compositions, attempting to develop for the viewer an attitude of curiosity and discussion when viewing a particular artwork.

Curator of exhibits; Festival of Arts & Community Art Project at Wells Fargo Bank, Laguna Beach, Ca.Committee Member; Artists Advisory, Exhibits & Jury Formation, Permanent Collection, Festival of Arts, Laguna Beach, Ca “Photography and Jurying Seminar”, Festival of Arts, Laguna Beach, Ca.

 

Gregg Stone has been an Art Director at Orange Coast College Media Center, Airbrush Artist, illustrator for a publishing company and fourteen consecutive year exhibitor at The Festival of Arts in Laguna Beach, California. A graduate of Art Center College of Design in Pasadena Gregg has had numerous exhibitions in US and Mexico including notable museums including overseas.

He is also an award-winning signature member of the San Diego Watercolor Society and Western Federation Watercolor Society. Being trained in traditional design and composition which will aid him in judging work in any media. Also, he is an experienced competition judge in both U.S. and Mexico.

 

Leslie Diane Davis is a transformative sculptor whose work focuses on the role of art in response to social, environmental, and biological crises. After extensive training under Dale Chihuly at Pilchuck Studios, Leslie’s early work concentrated on the tension between biological forms and abstract ideas. Her pioneering 2003 exhibition “Worlds in Collision” marked the beginning of the “third culture” movement integrating art and science. Her latest project, “Incarceration”, explores how art can render the experience of imprisonment and inspire comprehensive criminal justice reform.

 

Press Mentions:

"INCARCERATION", Visual Art Source, by Suvan Geer

Exhibition Depicts Injustice in the Justice System,
Laguna Beach Indy, By Daniella Walsh, February 16 2017

'Incarceration' exhibition's art shines a light on dark corners of justice,
Los Angeles Times, By Caitlin Yoshiko Kandil, February 9, 2017

Exhibit explores life behind bars,
OC Register, By Antonie Boessenkool, February 6, 2017

   
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