I asked thirteen incarcerated men if they would like to have a photograph of a place from the outside. I asked for specific instructions on how to make the pictures. My collaborators drew diagrams, maps and wrote descriptions based on their memories of the place. I then traveled to each location and made the photographs. The requests were of childhood homes, high schools, places of happiness and sadness, courthouses and places where their lives were irreversibly altered. Upon my return, the participants responded with a piece of writing that vary from childhood memory to epic fantasy.
At its core, this collection explores how an architectural space is remembered after years of incarceration. But the work evolved to an exploration of urban spaces, a reflection on changes due to gentrification, and in general, the psychological effect that architecture has on shaping our lives. The combination of images and the accompanying texts is a collection of stories about seeking redemption.
The exhibition consists of 20 photographs and 10 diagrams/notes from the book. All images are archival digital prints. They are nailed directly onto the wall.
Generously supported by a faculty research fund from Tufts University. All proceeds from the sales of the book will support the Tufts Prison Initiative TUPIT.
REVIEWS & INTERVIEWS
BOSTON ART REVIEW
Images Reclaimed: Chantal Zakari's New Book Sends Messages to Those Inside, Claire Ogden, November 14, 2023
Chantal Zakari, Pictures from the Outside, Blake Andrews, October 18, 2023