Art for Justice Fund Announces Spring 2020 Grantee Cohort



Today, the Art for Justice Fund announced over $14 million in funding to 47 artists and advocates focused on ending mass incarceration. This amount includes $2.5 million in emergency public health funding to address COVID-19 in prisons, jails and detention facilities. A full list of Spring 2020 grantee partners can be found here.

“Our nation is still reeling from COVID-19 and reckoning with racial injustice. We’re at a critical juncture. Fortunately, we have artists who envision for us a future of shared safety and shared prosperity. Artists in the Art for Justice community, working together with advocacy organizations, have long centered racial justice in ending mass incarceration – from policing to sentencing, from prisons to immigrant detention facilities. For change to be lasting, we need both cultural and political change,” said Agnes Gund, Art for Justice founder and Governing Board chair. “As such, we have expanded our partnerships with transformative artists. We’re honored to support artists such as Paul Rucker who often combines live performance, sound, original compositions and visual art to show the relationship between incarceration and slavery. We’re proud that Szu-Han Ho, an artist in performance, sound, text, image-making and installation who focuses on migration and borders and alternative economies, is among our new partners. And we’re excited about the artful and innovative approach of Designing Justice + Designing Spaces, an architecture and real estate development nonprofit that addresses the root causes of mass incarceration through the built environment.”

“Our mission to de-carcerate remains ever urgent, particularly for Black and brown communities. Our investment in this cohort continues to challenge the notion of who is incarcerated and why, fight excessive sentences and eliminate the discriminatory barriers people face when they return home,” added Helena Huang, Art for Justice project director. “Many of our grantee partners work across these areas and across the divisions of art and advocacy, which is a more powerful way to scale up and shore up change.”

Among the Art for Justice Spring 2020 grantee recipients are 20 current grantee partners, including the Los Angeles-based organization A New Way of Life, which will continue to use its SAFE (Sisterhood Alliance for Freedom and Equality) Housing Network program to help other organizations replicate the A New Way of Life reentry model in communities across the country.

The new grantee partners include 25 artists working across mediums to advance racial justice and end mass incarceration, as well as organizations like the Detroit Justice Center, which will advocate for the implementation of Michigan’s jail and pretrial reforms, advancing community reinvestment in Detroit and providing COVID-19 rapid response aid.

Meet our full community here.