Walls Turned Sideways
Artists Confront the Justice System
Published by Contemporary Arts Museum Houston.
Edited with text by Risa Puleo. Foreword by Bill Arning, Gean Moreno, Natalia Zuluaga. Text by Elizabeth Alexander, Jimmy Santiago Baca, Evan Bissell, Andy Campbell, Melanie Crean, Stephen F. Eisenman, Nicole R. Fleetwood, Michel Foucault, et al.
Walls Turned Sideways accompanies the largest museum presentation to investigate the criminal justice system in the US. What is the social role and responsibility of the artist in times of political urgency? What functions can only art and artists fulfill in the political landscape? This catalog discusses the work of more than 30 artists from across the nation, with works spanning the past 40 years, who address the criminal justice system and the prison industrial complex. The book’s title derives from a quote by political activist and author Angela Davis: “Walls turned sideways are bridges.” Artists featured include Josh Begley, Zach Blas, Luis Camnitzer, James Drake, Chris Burden, Martin Wong, Andrea Fraser, Coco Fusco and Paula Heredia, Titus Kaphar, Kapwani Kiwanga, Autumn Knight, Deana Lawson, Shaun Leonardo, Glenn Ligon, Lucky Pierre, Mark Menjivar, Trevor Paglen, Anthony Papa, Laurie Jo Reynolds, Dread Scott and Rodrigo Valenzuela. The book comes with two inserts: a poster by Ashley Hunt on the prison industrial complex, and a pamphlet of comics by various artists.