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“Being part of this programme has enabled me to grow as an artist. I find that through my paintings I can express my emotions and understand my potential, enabling me to contemplate a future in art.”

- ‘Our Time’ Artist

Artwork of iron wrought gate

On the other side, 'Our Time' Artist

For the last 14 years, and with visionary support from the Michael Varah Memorial Fund, we have been able to work with and support the artists of HMP Send.

Through weekly tutored studio workshops, artists are encouraged to develop and explore their own creative practice, ideas and concerns. This draws on making a connection to the resources and inspiration we can offer: our artworks, connections to artists’ practice, local artistic heritage and staff expertise. Since 2017, they have also planned and curated their own annual ‘Our Time’ exhibition within HMP Send – the first of its kind in any UK prison.

“Art gives me different avenues to express emotions deep within me, instead of anger and self-destruction"

- ‘Our Time’ Artist

Highlights from the 2022 ‘Our Time’ exhibition:

  • 96 artworks sold by 8 exhibiting artists in 6 hours over 2 days.
  • 14 ongoing commissions as a result of the exhibition.
  • 288 invited guests to the in-prison exhibition across two days.
  • 96% of guests confirmed the artwork ‘exceeded their expectations’.
Artwork of Tuscany scene with buildings and flowers

Tuscany, 'Our Time' Artist

This collaboration continues to inspire and inform our community and engagement work at Watts Gallery – Artists' Village. Above all, it resonates with our vision of Art for All by All, led by our artist-founders, George and Mary Watts.

“’Our Time’ continues to provide these talented artists with the opportunity to use their artistic ability to prepare for life after release. The artwork is impressive enough, and the fact they plan and curate this annual event alongside creating the exhibits is even more remarkable.”

- Mark Creaven, Governor HMP Send

Artwork of harvest mouse

Harvest mouse, 'Our Time' Artist

“Painting is my freedom: I can forget and escape in my happy place.”

- ‘Our Time’ Artist

Graphic of women diving through air

Flying high, 'Our Time' Artist

Colourful drawing of Tenby houses and beach

Tenby boats, 'Our Time' Artist

Exhibition supported by the Michael Varah Memorial Fund, Watts Gallery Trust and HM Prison & Probation Service.