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Today the President calls for criminal reform due to the commercialization of prisons and high levels of incarcerated men in the United States. At the same time, women in the United States continue to fight for equality. Opened in 1910, the Workhouse has always been synonymous with prison reform and the fight for gender equality.

In the early part of the 20th century, the Workhouse buildings were made from bricks forged on site by the prisoners, and laid by hand by the prisoners. Expressed as a Progressive Era idea to help petty criminals reform, the Workhouse prison became a place tarnished by its reputation. Forcing labor, torturing Suffragists and dangerously overcrowding inmates, the Workhouse finally closed at the turn of the century.

Prison (Re)Form will feature a limited number of sculptors on the outside grounds of the Workhouse. The exhibit will feature artwork grounded in the rich and layered history of the Workhouse prison.

The outdoor sculptures will engage in conversations of current and historic significance related to the penal system, the Suffragists, the use of labor and the contemporary state of prisons in the United States. Visitors will experience how artists represent that interpretation on the historical grounds, pregnant with the memories of prisoners, Suffragists, artists and laborers all hoping for a better tomorrow.

Click through to website to read more about the history of the Workhouse.