In 2017 Wallis Eates and I spent several months working on storytelling projects in HMP Wandsworth. The experience was rich, intense, frequently mind-boggling but ultimately inspiring; the men we worked with were so talented, open, creative, and honest, that we were blown away by them and their work.
While at Wandsworth we were made very welcome by the staff, many of whom bent over backwards to accommodate us and our equipment! Unfortunately, at the end of the project it was decided by the prison authorities that almost none of the men’s work could be released to the public and, since their digital outputs were stored on our equipment, we had to erase all their work in order to remove our equipment from the prison. This was utterly heartbreaking.
However, we were able at least to preserve their stories, which Wallis transcribed before the films and audio recordings were erased. Together we have been looking at ways to bring their stories – and our experiences – to a wider audience, under a project bearing the title: ‘Wings’.
We will keep you posted. If you would like to be updated, please join the mailing list here (no spam – promise!) and you’ll be the first to know of new developments…
Meanwhile you can check out Wallis and her amazing work here.