Renowned British sculptor Antony Gormley displays his provocative and heart rending Inside exhibition at London’s Southbank Centre, from September 21 2017 until November 15 2017. The exhibition looks at the often ignored prison statistics, and the lasting effects of incarceration long after rehabilitation. Admission is free for this gripping and gruelling display of public art, selected from over 7,000 pieces of music, writing, paintings and poetry entered into the 2017 Koestler awards.
Gormley’s Inside demands the attention and interaction of the viewer from entrance. There are headsets on walls and several of the sombre paintings are visual interpretations of the chaos of mental health behind bars. The voices of those reciting poetry are bleak and bona fide, an indication of why the event is recommended for over 16’s for its “distressing content”.
Speaking to an employee who wished to remain anonymous, he gave me an insight as to how different this exhibition was in comparison to Gormley’s display only a year earlier. “It’s really lacking the colour we saw with him last year, and it’s something I prefer to look at with art.” A seemingly critical response, perhaps referencing some of Gormley’s brighter work like his Angel of the North sculpture that overlooks Gateshead in the North East.