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Tuesday, 20 March 2018


First Impressions – Portraits from Prison, has been curated by the Koestler Trust, at the invitation of the Prisons Mission of Churches Together in Westminster. The exhibition was opened tonight at St James Piccadilly by prison reformist, Jonathan Aitken.

The Koestler Trust is the UK’s leading prison arts charity. It plays a vital part in the rehabilitation journey offered to prisoners and ex-prisoners to transform their lives through participation in arts.

The Prisons Mission is an initiative of Churches Together in Westminster (CTiW) which provides support and assistance identified and needed by the multi-faith Chaplaincy Teams in prisons. It also aims to ensure that prisoners while out of sight are not out of mind. 

The Prisons Mission has developed a very useful relationship with the Koestler Trust enabling the of this four Churches Show of Art by Prisoners. Artwork will be exhibited at St James’s Piccadilly, St Martin-in-the-Fields, Notre Dame de France and Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church. It is hoped that the artwork will be the focus for other prison related activities, discussions, lectures, displays and dramas, providing information about the prison and criminal justice system, not only to the regular congregations, but to a wider audience.

The exhibition showcases a selection of portraiture and sculpture entered into the Koestler Awards – an annual scheme run by the Koestler Trust that has been inspiring participation in the arts by people in the UK’s criminal justice system and secure sectors for over 55 years.


Johnny Cash - San Quentin.

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