16 June 2021

Explore My Path: Art by people in the criminal justice system at Ripon’s Prison & Police Museum

A new exhibition showcasing artwork from across the criminal justice system comes to the Prison & Police Museum in Ripon this summer, opening on Tuesday 29 June and running until Sunday 26 September 2021.

My Path is a creative walk through the criminal justice system. It showcases artworks from across Yorkshire, which were submitted to the 2020 Koestler Awards for arts in the criminal justice system. Every work shown was made by someone in a prison, secure hospital, young offender institution or on probation.

Koestler Arts exhibitions reveal talent and hope in challenging situations. Many of the artists created their work at the height of the pandemic in settings which had 23-hour lockups in place. They often had limited art materials, so each work represents a significant achievement.

The artworks on display have toured from an earlier version of My Path, at Millennium Gallery in Sheffield in Spring 2021. Young people supported by Sheffield Youth Justice Service curated the original version, bringing their insight and imagination to the selection. Staff and volunteers at Ripon Museums then chose the smaller selection that will be on display at the Prison & Police Museum, focusing on themes of nature, journeys and the prison experience.

Helen Thornton, Director at Ripon Museum Trust, said: “We’re so pleased to be able to share this exhibition with the people of Ripon. We think visitors will be impressed by the artwork on display, which makes for a moving and powerful experience. Thank you to Koestler Arts for bringing this exhibition to the Prison & Police Museum.”

Sally Taylor, Chief Executive of Koestler Arts, said: “We’re very glad to have this opportunity to bring Koestler Awards artwork from My Path to Ripon. Viewing Koestler Arts artwork inside what were once historic cells will make for an interesting juxtaposition of old and new. It is also a wonderful statement about the power of creativity at this extraordinary time.”

The Prison & Police Museum is open Tuesday to Sunday, 1pm – 4pm. Entrance to the exhibition is included in the cost of museum entry. All tickets to Ripon Museums are valid for repeat visits over a 12-month period. Visit for bookings or telephone 01765 690799. Ripon Museums have COVID-19 safety measures in place and have been awarded the Visit Britain We’re Good to Go industry standard.

Some of the visual artworks in the show are for sale through Koestler Arts, with prices ranging from £40 to £500. The money raised from artwork sales goes to the artist, the charity Victim Support and towards the cost of running the Koestler Awards. Visit their website for more information.

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