Prison Art Programs

“In the name of the Leaf”

“In the name of the leaf”, works by Angki Purbandono tells a story of how diversity of human characters can be
reflected on leaves, an inspiration discovered when he spent his time confined in an Indonesian prison, because of Cannabis. The time in which he was “saved” by Art and created Prison Art Programs.

PAP_AtasNamaDaun.jpg

Prison Art Programs (PAPs) led by Angki Purbandono, reminds us about human diversity which is reflected through a series of various leaves in a work entitled "In the Name of Leaf". This idea was discovered while he was in prison for cannabis. It was art that saved Angki's days and he passed it on to his friends so that a collaborative art movement was formed that used the artistic basis of "memories of prison". The platform gives people space, rights and certain freedoms not only during their time in prison but also after their release. In prison art, the creativity and stimulation in a humble context is often plainly visible and coins the artistic expression.

ATAS NAMA DAUN or “In The Name of the Leaf” Concept by Prison Art Programs – PAPs | Medium: Scanography | Method: Collecting a leaf | The project makes an artistic statement through the cannabis leaf as a symbol of equality in Indonesia and the rest of the world.


 

Before 2013, Angki would never have expected to get arrested due to the possession of a cannabis leaf. He was jailed in a prison in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, one of the countries that includes cannabis on the list of illicit drugs. While prison in Indonesia can be a horrible experience by itself, the life of an ex-convict after release continues to be affected after the imprisonment. Society often perpetuates the punishment through discrimination and condemnation. However, in Angki’s case, he was smart enough to use the 10 month jail term as his “art residency” and turned his hoarding habits into art practice. Because of his efforts, he was allowed to use one room in prison as his art studio where conceived this Art Program`s ideology. In May 2013, in cooperation with twenty other inmates, he created ‘Prison Art Programs’. This community-based prison program established a protected environment in which prisoners can work as artists by painting, drawing and scanning. The artistic items produced are meant for a broader distribution.

 

Prison Art Programs – PAP’s initiated by Angki and supported by other prisoners is an art movement based on collaborative work which uses as an artistic base the “memories of prison”. The platform gives people space, rights and certain freedoms not only during their time in prison but also after their release. In prison art, the creativity and stimulation in a humble context is often plainly visible and coins the artistic expression. 

 

One of the aims of this new prison art genre, “In the Name of the Leaf”, is to make us reflect on the source of knowledge: NATURE. How can we as human beings respect nature and use our knowledge without prejudice? It refers to a utopian time when humans were living in harmony without discrimination based on skin color, sexual preference, religion or politics. This movement is not only for ex-prisoners, but it also serves as a manifestation of respect to the people who have memories of family and friends who are or were in prison. Angki Purbandono uses the medium of scanography and presents “the LEAF” as a medium to express his voice regarding social engagement. After two years, Angki was able to convince the Indonesian Ministry of Law and Human Rights to establish this foundation on lawful terms. 

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