Assignment 2

Publication proposal


Write and send to your tutor a comprehensive proposal showing in detail how you intend to resolve and deliver or disseminate your major project.  Refer to the brief for Assignment Five for more detail about what is expected of you for the resolution of your major project.

Your proposal should include:

  • a timeline for the development of your project, your marketing strategy and the resolution of your work, including installation if appropriate.
  • a description of your work.  Use the work you did for Contextual Studies to help you position your work in its critical and/or commercial context.  Briefly explain your motivations and how the project fits within your practice more broadly.
  • a budget, detailing the costs associated with the resolution of your project and identifying any payment in kind.
  • a description of how you intend to maximise the presence of your work and engage with your audience, such as your plans for a private view, screening event or artist’s talk.

The whole document should not exceed 2000 words.  If you’d like to explore a more experimental approach to the proposal, send any ideas to your tutor.

Check the work against the assessment criteria listed in the introduction to the course guide.



I propose to hold an exhibition which will comprise the following:

  • A physical exhibition in a space called “The Cells” which is in the original Devonport Guild Hall in Plymouth.   It has that name because it has 3 prisoner cells and is adjacent to and in the same building which housed the magistrates court in Devonport.    The space, with its obvious connections, makes it an ideal place to hold the exhibition.  As a ‘white’ body of work, the exhibition seeks to dispel the ubiquitous violent, drugged-up, anarchic view of prisoners invariably portrayed in the mass media.
  • In the space, I plan to exhibit 12, A3 images attached to the hanging system with bulldog clips.  Four of the images, one for each season, will be covered by an image on an A3 sheet of tracing paper of a photograph of a print made by plant and mineral material found outside or in the vicinity of HMP Dartmoor where the author of the letters in my project spent a year.  The idea is that these seasonal images of the prints will give a sense of place over time.  The viewers are encouraged to lift the tracing paper to see and, if necessary, to touch and feel the images underneath.    Viewers can also touch the other free-standing images.  By touching, the viewers become part of the experience: it is hoped that, by no longer being passive but leaving their mark, the viewers will become more involved in this different interactive form of exhibiting different images.  In other words, by doing what is not normally done in exhibitions, it is hoped that One Year is remembered as one which presented prisons and prisoners differently.



Summer images with earphones and MP3player on wall 72dpi DSC01037


Tracing paper lifting 72dpi DSC01043


Exposed leaf and tracing paper 72dpi DSC01042

February 9 72dpi

September 2 72dpi

The colours of the image on the tracing paper (Figures 1 & 6), being those of the print made of the plant and mineral material found in the vicinity of HMP Dartmoor, are strongly related visually and contextually to the colours on the HMP Dartmoor image (Figures 5 & 7)

A1 remake 3. splodge horizontal 72dpi .jpg


Radio mast September 72dpi DSCF2773.png


  • On the wall next to each image will be a QR code and /or an app reference which will enable those visitors with smart phones to access the recordings of the relevant parts of the letters pertaining to each image.  Those without smartphones will be able to pick up a laminated transcript of the recordings from the entrance.  I would like to investigate developing an app with a student from the University of Plymouth, so that people can use their own phones and earphones.
  • A 10 minute piece of music commissioned by me and composed by an OCA music student as a response to the work will  be accessible via the QR code.    The idea of including another art form in the exhibition was inspired by my recent trip to see PhotoIreland where several of the exhibitions curators had applied to Arts Council Ireland for funding to promote other forms of art.
  • One of the cells in the complex will contain the quilt I will have made by cyanotype prints from the plant photos taken at LandWorks, Dartington, an organisation which uses prisoners on day release, newly released prisoners and those in danger of committing crimes, to grow food and flowers, to develop their skills in pottery, masonry and other pursuits.
  • The other cell will have a looped projection of general images taken of the work being done at LandWorks, Dartington over the course of three seasons.
  • I plan to make 20 books of the work to sell at £20 each and cards at £2 each on sale throughout the exhibition.
  • I propose to do a leaf installation, after the work of Rebecca Louise Law, which will hang in the recessed closed doorway at the end of the corridor because there is a void there at the focal point of the space.  As an ephemeral piece, it will not impede the emergency exit.
  • I am hoping that by having different elements, including an interactive one, the exhibition and its portrayal of a different prison and prisoner perspective, will linger in the minds of those who attend.

Project description:

Set in a Victorian building, One Year is a very human story which highlights isolation, vulnerability, resilience and a determination to ‘keep busy’, an expression used in several of Ian’s letters.  The use of the plant material marks the passage of time and the inescapable change it brings, as well as a sense of place, in and out of prison.

The project is the outcome of a correspondence initiated with a friend and local preacher who was arrested on his fiftieth birthday for a crime he had committed in his mid-teens.  The resulting project documents a year spent in prison in Britain in 2016.

Instead of focusing on the violence, drug abuse and overcrowding in British prisons which dominate our biased documentaries and mediated images, this project explores the accounts of the opportunities prisoners take to improve their skills sets.

During 2016, those life-affirming experiences described in the letters, were also starting to emerge in the work of practising photographic artists like Edmund Clark and Jennifer Wicks.

In an increasing number of prisons, gardening is being considered a form of therapy for the inmates’ wellbeing.  The Royal Horticultural Society, for example, awards the Windlesham Trophy annually to the best prison garden in England and Wales.  As is the case with developing prisoners’ skills sets, you will not see this in the mass media because it is not a sensational topic.

White dominates in this project because the correspondence shows that there is a metaphorical light in prison in the form of opportunities offered to inmates to progress in their life’s journey, and that there is goodness in their being.  More and more writers, artists, criminologists and prison governors realise that the answer to society’s ills is not to build bigger and bigger prisons, and fill them, like warehouses, with all the worst parts of us.


Exhibition budget:

Music and creative writing commissions: £2000

Marketing:                                                          £150

Opening event reception:                                  £50

Image printing:                                                    £50

Bulldog clips: 24 x £10                                        £25

Hiring projector for 2 weeks: (Discounted?)£200

Book: 20 x Self made, 20 page books             £400

Quilt material: Textile                                        £20

Cyanotype  chemicals                                          £30

Total outlay:                                                                             £2925


Time and services in kind:

My stewarding 10days x 6hrs x £20/hr          £1200

My administration 10 days x 6hrs                   £1200

Development of an audio app. free.

Outreach: *  Meet the artist where I will talk

about my correspondence with a prisoner

in HMP Dartmoor. 2 hours x £20/hr                  £40

Both these last ‘expenses’ are held in

what used to be a culturally deprived

area of Plymouth.  This exhibition

is making people aware of prison images

not normally in the headlines. (6 hours)         £120

Gallery hire:   Free in exchange for outreach

University of Plymouth app development.

Total cost in kind:                                                                 £2360

*  A day’s awareness of prison life.


Exhibition timeline:

2019:  July 12th: Exhibition closes with the auction of the quilt.

July 11th: Workshop at “The Cells” on a topic related to prisoner rehabilitation:possibly making a quilt like those made by OCA tutor Michele Whiting, involving the local community.

July 4th: Artist’s talk at “The Cells”.

July 1st:  Exhibition opening event 6 – 8pm in “The Cells” Devonport, Plymouth.  All the invited guests will have been involved with the project, the prison, the local community, local galleries, news outlets and arts centres, as well as OCA students and tutors interested in the project.

June 30th: Set up the exhibition.

June 26th: Test audio & visual equipment in situ.

June 11th: Final leaf collection & complete the plant material installation (after Rebecca  Louise Law)

June: early: make the last cyanotype for the quilt & stitch it into the quilt.

April: Start assembling the installation of leaves.

April 25th: Final material collection for the Spring paste & prints.

March: Hand in Assignment 4

February: Apply for funding: Arts Council England  et al.

January: Start putting the quilt cyanotype squares together.

December: The Photographers’ Gallery: Folio Fridays. TBA

December 10th: Hand in assignment 3

December: Make quilt cyanotypes from LandWorks images on white cotton.

November:   Test the BoW at the OCA SW exhibition in Bristol (20th- 25th).

November: Portfolio reviews: Look out for TPG Dec. date.

October 4th:  Hand in Assignment 2

September: Contact T.Clarke at 1000 Words Magazine for the £45 portfolio review.

”         Contact for portfolio review $50

(1466 words)


Reflection on the work:

I am not sure how to resolve the body of work for 3 main reasons:

  •  Because I want to realise a conceptual documentary, using the actual prison images is for me too literal.  In a recent talk at her exhibition venue, Helen Sear said her work cannot be seen as documentary because she has edited it all.
  • Because of the conclusion to my CS essay deals with the idea that prisons are filled with all the worst parts of each one of us, my fault line images become significant in what I want to say through the work on prisons.
  • Because the place and time are significant factors in One Year, my prints made of local organic and mineral matter and the leaves become significant benchmarks.


I want to retain the following aspects:

  •  the audio aspect of the work as it is using QR codes / an app referencing my ‘official / professional website which I still need to create.
  • the quilt & the plant material references in it.
  • the use of tracing paper for its ephemeral / brittle qualities reflecting the passage of time.
  • the creation of a piece of commissioned music for the exhibition.



7 thoughts on “Assignment 2

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