Reframing the Future
I learned that everything surrounding art is art. The set up of galleries, the delivery, the protection. Even becoming a known person [in the artworld] is an art. - Aldo Lucero, NYC Artworld Education Graduate '17
Yesterday the first NYC Contemporary Artworld Education class at Rikers graduated. There was no pomp and circumstance, no music, no food and no family to witness their achievements. Instead, we sat in a circle and talked about their lives before and after jail. It was humbling to see how natural it is for these men to speak positively despite their surrounding and their unknown futures. They have levels of passion and commitment rarely known. When asked, they attribute it to survival -- and this class. I believe them.
To commemorate their participation, I made a Certificate of Completion, which I've copied below. The Artworld has opened them up to new possibilities. It's up to me and to all of us to see it through. Stay tuned for the development of a full-fledged Art Handling Training and Placement program at Rikers and beyond.
June, 27 2017
Congratulations on successfully completing Oppression, Expression, Profession: The NYC Artworld Education program! It has been an honor to teach and learn from you. I hope that you take what you learned from this class into your new lives and create positive change within yourselves and your communities. I, along with the Department of Correction, will continue to build program services to include Art Handling Training and Placement post-incarceration. Stay tuned wherever you are, and keep the faith and hard work up!