Despite representing just over 4 percent of the global population, the United States is responsible for nearly a quarter of the global prison population. This is a human rights issue of epic proportions that urgently needs to be addressed, and done so with the expertise of those most impacted.
“The exhibition expands the possibilities of how art might respond to a lived experience of confinement and helps reaffirm a larger truth: vast and rich human potential, artistic or otherwise, is wasted when 2.3 million people are behind bars.” - Jesse Krimes and Daveen Trentmann, Co-Curators
The O.G. Experience, inspired by HBO Films’ O.G., uplifted the voices and experiences of those who have been the most impacted by incarceration and uncovered important truths about the United States’ history of oppression. Just as the original film cast currently incarcerated people in a real correctional facility, The O.G. Experience showcased the work of formerly incarcerated artists, picking up where the film left off while providing a uniquely honest and evocative insider narrative about the U.S. prison system.
Built with the intention of sparking a conversation about the staggering effects incarceration has on our communities (both inside and outside the penal system), the O.G. Experience raises critical questions that will lead us to actionable solutions.
Lastly, all of this would not have been possible without the Right of Return USA Fellowship and its co-chairs Jesse Krimes and Russell Craig. Now in its second year, The Right of Return USA Fellowship is the first — and only — fellowship exclusively dedicated to formerly incarcerated artists.