An exhibition of paintings by prisoners at HMP Edinburgh opens to the public next week. ‘Straight Outta Saughton’ presented by the Edinburgh People’s Festival, begins a two week run at the WHALE Arts Centre in Wester Hailes starting Monday 29th August.
The paintings have recently been on display inside the prison but Peoples Festival Director Colin Fox believes they deserve to be seen by a wider audience.
The People’s Festival has a strong relationship with HMP Edinburgh having worked together on several projects over the past 14 years. We are hosting this remarkable exhibition of paintings by inmates at Saughton because they are worth seeing and provide a glimpse of the rehabilitation work that goes on inside the jail. We believe marginalised communities such as prisoners should be included in the artistic life of the city.
Like the prison staff we believe in the restorative power of art and in giving people the chance to put past mistakes and offending behaviour behind them. Art and culture can help that process.
This particular initiative allowed the prisoners to express themselves through their art and we are grateful to HMP Edinburgh for helping us to show the work. We are also indebted to WHALE Arts Centre for agreeing to host the show. We believe it is an important display and hope people from across the city will come and see it.
Colin Fox, Director, Edinburgh People’s Festival.