News & Stories

Project Premiere: Los Angeles Poverty Department's State of Incarceration at Highways Performance Space in LA

January 26, 2011



State of Incarceration Highways Performance Space Santa Monica, CA January 28 & 29, February 4 & 5, 8:30pm 2009 Performing Arts grantees Los Angeles Poverty Department (LAPD) present State of Incarceration, the performance element of their Creative Capital project, History of Incarceration, this weekend and next at Highways Performance Space in Santa Monica. State of Incarceration explores the consequence of incarceration on people, families and communities. The performance space mimics a restrictive prison architecture, filled wall-to-wall with 60 prison-model bunk beds, replicating the overcrowded California State Prisons. Events will include conversations with those working to improve conditions in the county jails and state prisons, including Esther Lim, B.S., MSW, Attorney Jessica Price of the ACLU’s Jails Project and Attorney Michael Bien. History of Incarceration is comprised of this evening-length theater performance, a public artwork and various community engagement activities around issues of incarceration in America. Utilizing collaborative techniques, History of Incarceration was created by artists, organizers and residents of Los Angeles’s Skid Row, many of whom were recently released from prison. Material for each element was developed through community meetings and partnerships with grassroots organizations. State of Incarceration studies the inmate's experience through the ritual of incarceration, from entering prison to release and the challenges of re-integration. Developed in LAPD's workshops, the piece asserts that it is each recovering convict's responsibility to work together collectively to challenge the societal stigma and current judicial approaches to rehabilitation. Back to Listing