Art and creative pieces produced by Novus learners in young offender institutions in the UK have been recognised in this year’s Koestler Awards.
Pieces from young people at HMYOI Cookham Wood and HMYOI Wetherby also featured in the Koestler Arts exhibition at the Southbank Centre in London.
The Koestler Awards are run by prison arts charity the Koestler Trust. This year’s UK exhibition, titled ‘Another Me’, was curated by award-winning British jazz and hip-hop musician Soweto Kinch. The exhibition invited visitors to reassess their perceptions of people who have spent time inside.
Learners at HMYOI Cookham Wood continue their year on year success in the Koestler Awards, producing some inspirational pieces of work in all categories. A collaborative music piece by two learners was selected for the annual Koestler Arts exhibition at London’s Southbank Centre.
HMYOI Wetherby also featured in this year's exhibition, with artwork from three talented learners on display.
Lucy Senior, Curriculum Manager for the Arts at HMYOI Wetherby, said: ‘’I am so proud of the exceptional work produced by the young people here at Wetherby. It is great that their talent is on display.
“The time, care and pride they all put into creating their pieces of art is admirable. I would like to also acknowledge the hard work and dedication of all the teaching staff involved in supporting the young people with their art and their skills development in the subject.’’
Art can be a positive vehicle supporting young people on the path to rehabilitation, as they learn and develop employability skills such as team work and social skills, or even provide a pathway to employment in an arts-related industry. It helps to break down barriers and reduce isolation and the stigma of being inside, encourage inclusivity, support mental health needs, and build family ties.
Barbara McDonough, Chief Operating Officer for Novus, added: “Congratulations to all our learners on their success in this year’s awards. Receiving recognition for their work and talent can often be crucial in providing them with the motivation they need to turn their life around.”
Receiving recognition for their work and talent can often be crucial in providing them with the motivation they need to turn their life around.