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Artists Share Their Stories in New Book by Janie Paul

Janie Paul, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor Emerita at the Stamps School, is the author of the new book, Making Art in Prison: Survival and Resistance.

A book signing will be held on Tuesday, March 21 at the opening of the 27th Annual Exhibition of Artists in Michigan Prisons. The event is taking place at the Duderstadt Gallery from 5:00 pm until 8:00 pm. Books will also be available for purchase.

Paul has been part of the Prison Creative Arts Project (PCAP) for nearly 30 years and is the co-founder, with her late husband Buzz Alexander, of the Annual Exhibitions of Artists in Michigan Prisons. The book represents her work to cultivate, curate, and celebrate the work of incarcerated artists in Michigan. 

In this video, Paul describes her experiences working with incarcerated artists, and viewers meet three of the artists she encountered as they explain what it was like making art in prison.

Paul is a renowned painter, community-based artist, and educator who has received many awards for her art and social justice work. Since its founding in 1996, she has been the Senior Curator of the annual exhibitions. For many years, Janie taught Art Workshops in Prisons, a class in which college students facilitate weekly art workshops in prisons and juvenile facilities. In the past, Paul taught the Detroit Connections class, where students work with underserved Detroit public elementary schools, helping youngsters create art that promotes growth through individual and collaborative work.

View images of work by the artists featured in our video profile.