Humanities Action Lab (HAL) is a national hub at The New School where the humanities and design generate innovative curricula and public engagement with urgent social issues. The first Humanities Action Lab (HAL) project States of Incarceration (SOI) focuses on the past, present, and future of incarceration, exploring the explosion of prisons and incarcerated people in the US — including immigration detention centers — and its global dimensions. Combining historical and theoretical study with hands-on experience, students at The New School collaborated with the Fortune Society and students at twenty other universities around the country to develop a traveling exhibition, digital platform, oral histories, face-to-face community dialogues, and interactive media. Students are responsible for building New York City’s “chapter” of the exhibition and web platform. To create their local piece of the exhibit, students work with research provided by the Humanities Action Lab; conduct original research as needed; and put together a public presentation of the issue that follows guidelines and goals developed by all the partners and a common design template. The exhibition opened at the Arnold and Sheila Aronson Galleries at The New School in New York City in April 2016 and is traveling to at least 19 other cities - communities that created it - over the next three years. This is a unique opportunity for students to question and propose innovative ways that museums and curators – and the combination of the humanities and design – can generate and exchange locally-grounded approaches to complex global questions and explore strategies for encouraging dialogue.
Liz Ševčenko, Director, Humanities Action Lab
Julia Thomas, Assistant Director
Julia Bowling, Communications Assistant
Piper Anderson, Director of Engagement Strategies
Louisa Strothman, Communications & Programming Intern
Curation Global Dialogue: Incarceration
Participatory Community Engagement
The States of Incarceration project is a traveling exhibition and series of events that bring together people across the country to share local stories and open dialogue on national criminal justice reform and immigrant detention...
States of Incarceration: The Podcast tells stories of the incarceration generation from 17 states around the country. The podcast travels from New York, NY, to Riverside, CA, and 18 other cities -- to hear formerly incarcerated people, people who work in prisons, and people...
The following audio visual essay, titles "A Day in the Life of the Rikers Island Bridge" was created by Darcy Bender (Visualization), Estefania Acosta (Audio), and Laura Sanchez (Audio). It is part of the States of Incarceration's first exhibition in New York...
The following artist statement by Imani Tudor, an undergraduate photography student at Parsons School of Design, is part of the States of Incarceration's exhibit in New York: "New York: "Rikers Island, NY 11370: In Plain Sight". The body of work is one of many that poses reflects...
Below are a series of podcasts created by undergraduate students at Skidmore College, and is is part of the States of Incarceration's exhibit in New York: "New York: Closing a Prison, Deferring a Dream". The body of work is one of many that poses reflects on the question...
The following work is by students by students at Parsons Paris and it is part of the States of Incarceration's exhibit in New York: "New York: Michel Foucault and the Groupe D'information sur les Prisons". The collection of artifacts and imagery is a study on the person who began a global debate...