HMP Grendon operates a Democratic Therapeutic Community to provide group-based therapy within a social climate which promotes positive relationships, personal responsibility and social participation.
Each wing at HMP Grendon is a ‘community’ – its inhabitants always referred to as ‘residents’ – operating a daily regime of art therapy, psychodrama and psychotherapy which leads to a reduction in the risk of reoffending for those who remain in treatment for more than 18 months.
This environment provides a unique setting for an artist residency, currently with Dean Kelland (2019-2023), funded by the Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust.
ARTIST IN RESIDENCE
Ikon worked in partnership with HMP Grendon, the Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust and renowned artist Edmund Clark over a four-year programme (2014 – 2018).
In light of evidence that the arts can offer transformational experience in offenders’ lives thus breaking the vicious circle of crime and incarceration, the Artist in Residence programme developed a public discourse about prisons, rehabilitation and criminality. Integral to the artist’s research and art work, undertaken during the residency, were practical opportunities for offenders to work alongside a professional artist assisting them in their own creative endeavours.
IN PLACE OF HATE
Clark, an artist with a longstanding interest in incarceration and its effects, worked with inmates, prison officers and therapeutic staff, immersing himself in the prison routines and wing community meetings, a key element of life at Grendon.
The culmination of his residency was the Ikon exhibition In Place of Hate (6 December 2017 — 11 March 2018), which comprised photography, video and installation.