The 26th Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners, a program of the Prison Creative Arts Project at the University of Michigan, showcases the work of incarcerated artists living in Michigan prisons. The work is by men and women from all 26 state prisons in both the upper and the lower peninsulas: 25 men’s prisons and 1 women’s prison. This year there are 714 works in two and three dimensions, including portraits, tattoo imagery, landscapes, fantasy, and wildlife as well as images about incarceration and visions that are entirely new. On this site you can browse all artwork in the show and read artist statements from the contributing artists. We invite you to enjoy the work and, if you like, make a purchase. All proceeds, minus necessary taxes and fees, go directly to the artists.
This show marks the first in-person exhibition mounted by PCAP in three years; just days before the 2020 show was set to open, our campus shut down due to covid-19. We could not go to prison again until this fall, when we were able to visit the facilities, meet with artists, and select artwork for the 26th Annual Exhibition. The artwork you see here is a testament to the resilience of artists and the life-giving power of art under the most difficult of circumstances–incarceration, isolation, and unimaginable loss. It is an important reminder of the connections that sustain us all, in the free world and behind the walls.