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Unthinkable Imagination: A Creative Response to the Juvenile Justice Crisis

Jan 21, 2023 – Jun 10, 2023
Centering the voices and experiences of more than 20 system-impacted youth participants, the exhibition utilizes paintings, illustrations, photographs, performance, sculpture, sound, collage, and mural work to navigate this difficult topic. While addressing the history of the youth justice system in Louisiana, the root causes of the system, and the direct harm it does to young people and their families, the show constantly underscores what is truly lost when we give up on the youth of our state—their humanity. Through the art, audio, color and movement, Unthinkable Imagination aims to constantly point – metaphorically and visually – towards the future by asking us all the question what could a Louisiana without youth prisons be?

As one young person involved in the show succinctly answered, “Somewhere I’m supposed to be.” By lending their voices, their talents, their experiences, and their creativity the youth involved in Unthinkable Imagination have fashioned a place of belonging and ownership, a place where joy takes precedence—where their dreams are center stage. We invite you to see, hear, and feel these stories. We hope that you to leave here changed, moved to action on behalf of the youth of our state, to ensure that they have the freedom to be kids and the freedom to shape their own future.

The exhibition includes commissioned artwork from Abdul Aziz, Nic[o] Brierre Aziz, Adrienne Brown-David, Nya Carolington Skipper, Aubrey Edwards, Dave Greber, Robert Jones, Ivy Mathis, Demond Matsuo, Louise Mouton Johnson, Gyanni Paris, Pat Phillips, McKinley “Mac” Phipps, Jr., Sheila Phipps, Nik Richard, Vitus Shell, Mariana Sheppard, Sha’Condria “iCon” Sibley, Maxx Sizeler, Charm Taylor and Breanna Thompson. Additionally, the exhibit features art projects created with youth, in workshops led by teaching artists Langston Allston, Jose Cotto, Cherice Harrison-Nelson, Linda A. Reno with Nic[o] Brierre Aziz, Sheila Phipps, and Marta Rodriguez Maleck.

Learn more at the Unthinkable Imagination website

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