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Art In Place/Art in Incarceration

Art Class
Paint Splatter Sax and Jazz Poster (2)_edited_edited_edited.jpg


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Indigenous artists from the Alexander Maconochie Centre

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In terms of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art program, since the inception of the AMC in  2008 cultural art creation by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander detainees has been an important activity for this cohort as it connects them to their culture and by their own admission provides the brief moment of respite they need from the being incarcerated in order to cope. Before the recent COVID-19 lockdown a weekly cultural art program was running in the AMC for men and women facilitated by local artist Aunty Veronica Jordan. As part of this program artists were not only encouraged to hone their existing skills but are also invited to learn more about the totems, symbols and patterns they were putting to canvas so they could better understand the cultural significance of what they were painting.


On completion of any artwork detainees have the option of keeping their work in storage until their release, gifting their artwork out of the facility to nominated family or friends or putting their work up for public sale through the popular electronic Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Detainee Art Catalogue, which is regularly sent out to ACT Government Agencies, or of which such works are placed on public display through approved exhibitions. The art catalogue will soon be available for broader public access on the Justice and Community Safety website.


The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Detainee Art Catalogue was an initiative commenced in 2017 and in that time has seen over 290 artworks submitted for public sale of which around 250 have been sold amounting to approximately $100, 000 being spread throughout participating detainees holding accounts providing them scope to have a small nest egg on release to assist with their successful reintegration into society upon release. A number of detainees have also proceeded to make a living in the community from their artistic ability by continuing to create and sell art publicly.

To purchase any of the Indigenous artist art contact

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