Outdoor exhibition: The Workshop PLACE Bastøy Prison
When confined in prison, how do people experience the term “place”?
The PLACE workshop exhibition displayed outside Preus museum consists of pictures and texts created by inmates during a workshop held in Bastøy in 2019, curated with an aim into giving insight into this experience.
The PLACE workshop, held in October 2019, was a collaboration between Preus museum and the Norwegian Correctional Service, including artist and photographer Tina Enghoff and prison chaplain Kamille Nygård. The main focus in the workshop was to make Throughout the workshop the most important focus was to make
Sure, the eight participating inmates were able to express themselves freely through photography and text. The pictures and texts exhibited are produced and selected collectively among the participants. This exhibition is a history of, and not about, the eight people who participated in the workshop.
Bastøy is an open prison run by a small local community. This community is dependent on the workforce provided by the inmates to carry out the prison services.
For this system to work, the inmates gain both trust and responsibility. This in turn helps them regain a sense of self-worth and effectively reduces the feelings of isolation from the society around the island. One of the inmates said; "Here things are based on trust among people, not rules. I think this is fantastic".
In many ways, freedom feels much closer and within reach at Bastøy. This premise has naturally influenced the images and the texts produced during the visit. The texts and images express more than frustration, hopelessness and or deep feelings about being people erased from society. They also express joy, thankfulness and the hope to once again step out into the world. They also express joy, thankfulness, and the hope of once again stepping out into the world. One of the participants said during the workshop: “Here at Bastøy, we are taught to be humans again”. That is an excellent testimony highlighting the essential function provided by the open prisons within the Norwegian Correctional Services.