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  • Writer's pictureDamien Linnane

Broken Chains, an art exhibition (and podcast!)

Updated: Sep 28, 2021

It's funny how things snowball sometimes. Back in December last year, I was offered a last minute place at a group art exhibition being held at Newcastle Library. After viewing my work, the library asked me if I was interested in holding a solo exhibition there. I was actually half-way through creating pieces for my next art exhibition, though hadn't even thought about a space to hold it, so I had a couple meetings with the library explaining the concept of what would become Broken Chains.

If you've been following my story this far, you'd know I saw prison as a once in a lifetime opportunity for creative pursuits, rather than as a punishment. I ended up dividing my sentence up equally between writing a novel and teaching myself to draw. I wanted my next exhibition to highlight the achievements of what other people have accomplished both during and after prison. The library was completely onboard, though caught me a little off guard when they asked if I could create a podcast to go with the exhibition, following a similar theme. I'm not really one to turn down an incredible offer though, so before I knew it I was in the libraries new podcast studio chatting to other inmates, in between finishing the final portraits.

I'm pleased to announce that Broken Chains: Prisoners Unlocking Potential has just been been installed at Wallsend Public Library, and will be on display there until November 7. In the coming days you'll also be able to view the artworks digitally both online and at the Digital Library in Newcastle West. A party for the exhibition will be held in September. I'll post more about that in due time, and also about the upcoming episodes of Broken Chains: A Prison Podcast. We've still got one final episode to record for season one. Episodes will definitely be released before the exhibition is over.

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