Art at a Time Like This Announces Open Call for Public Project

Posted on Aug 2, 2023

Art at a Time Like This OPEN CALL 8x5  Public Art Project Responding To  Mass Incarceration Crisis and the Texas Justice System

In the midst of the ongoing mass incarceration crisis and inequalities in the justice system, Art at a Time Like This (ATLT) and Save Art Space announce the Houston edition of "8X5," a nationwide public art project calling for artists to respond to this urgent issue. The campaign, named after the size of an average prison cell, aims to highlight the impact of the judicial system on communities and foster creative dialogue about the state of the Texas justice system.

Artists from all backgrounds and stages of their careers are invited to participate in this Open Call, with the opportunity to have their artworks displayed on billboards, kiosks, and digital trucks throughout Houston. The goal is to find up to ten artists whose works will shed light on the profound depth of the mass incarceration problem in Texas and the United States at large. The project's curators include renowned figures such as Barbara Pollack, Anne Verhallen, Christopher Blay, and Bridget Bray, who will ensure a diverse selection process that reflects the gravity of the issue.

The statistics speak volumes about the scale of the crisis: the United States holds about 20% of the world's prisoners despite representing only 4.2% of the global population. In Texas, with the largest prison population in the country, more than 133,000 people are behind bars. "8X5" seeks to create change through numbers, encouraging artists to respond to these staggering statistics through their artwork.

The application deadline is September 1st, 2023, and artists of all ages and talents are encouraged to submit their work. While there is a $10 donation per image submission, it is tax-deductible and goes toward producing the public art. ATLT is committed to inclusivity, ensuring that all artists, regardless of financial ability, will be accepted. The selected artworks will be displayed at the end of October 2023, giving Houston residents the opportunity to engage with powerful art that confronts one of society's most pressing issues.

"8X5" presents a timely and vital opportunity for artists to contribute their voices to the fight against mass incarceration and the Texas justice system's inequalities. Through the power of art, this public intervention aims to spark conversation, challenge perceptions, and inspire change for a better, more equitable future. We invite artists to seize this moment and respond to the crisis in their own unique and impactful ways. Together, we can raise awareness and create a more just society through the transformative power of art.


Find out more about the open call here at ATLT's website


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