Windows from Prisons USA

My teacher told me about this – Windows from Prisons – this is an amazing project that combines the two things I am passionate about, damn, I wish I had thought of that myself ūüôā

In America they really seem to be¬†into their community support prison programs. Of course they’d want to be, with the highest incarceration rate in the world. Nonetheless, the fact that some many ordinary people get behind these project, communicate and connect, that I admire.

Windows From Prison*¬†is an ongoing project that uses photography as a way to connect incarcerated men, women, and teens to their past while creating space and humanistic entry points for students, faculty, NGO’s, family members of incarcerated individuals, former prisoners, and policy makers to engage with the sources, impacts, and alternatives to mass incarceration.

Beginning with creative writing workshops with incarcerated men, women, and teens, the project asks:

‚ÄúIf you could have window in your cell, what place from your past would it look out to?‚ÄĚ

These responses become photo requests that are collaboratively produced by students, former prisoners, artists, activists, and many others.

Do check them out http://www.windowsfromprison.com/

And here’s an article in the Guardian with more photos.

http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/gallery/2014/aug/05/windows-from-prison-view-jail-cells-project-us-inmates-in-pictures#comments

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Kalasataman taidetalkoot2

This is an update on the park project in Kalasatama. Previous post is here.

After a vote, through facebook and paper form left in a Piggybaggy¬†and City Library community area, the name of the park was decided on¬†–¬†Katiska, a fish trap.

Now for the new additions. The kids from local kindergarten really wanted to come and help with the park, but by the time that was arranged, autumn had arrived. We couldn’t take the 4 and 5 year-olds out on the lashing rain, so we brought the park to them instead. Annika picked up some smaller rocks ¬†and we had a painting session (well, two – one with each age group) and the kids covered the rocks in safe and washable finger paint. As they were painting,¬†we all talked about the park and the kids even taught me some Finnish. Once the rocks were dry, Annika and I varnished them with a weather-resistant paint and brought back to the park, for decoration and also for playing some kind of a Finnish game (I’ll tell you about it once I learn how to play it).

Photo by Annika Niskanen
Photo by Annika Niskanen
Photo by Annika Niskanen
Photo by Annika Niskanen

To get a donation of some used tyres, I contacted various car repair places, addresses of which I found on the official Nokia tyres web page. A lovely guy, who works for one of them, Rengaskeskus,  agreed to donate about 30 tyres for us and even dropped them off to us on his day off. We wanted to use the tyres for sitting, making flower beds and building forts.

Then we held another outdoor painting session. As the temperature was close to zero degrees, only the most hardcore mums and their well wrapped up toddlers took part in the Taidetalkoot (Taide being art, and talkoot Рsomething along the lines of spring clean, a get together of the neighbours to beautify their common areas  and have a bbq afterwards). Nonetheless, this is what we had in the end:

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