ART THERAPIST & JAC MEMBER BRITTNEY KATHRYN KNAPP CREATES VISUAL CAMPAIGN TO HIGHLIGHT RAPE CRISES ON RIKERS

women silenced by a piece of tape over her mouth

14 Dec ART THERAPIST & JAC MEMBER BRITTNEY KATHRYN KNAPP CREATES VISUAL CAMPAIGN TO HIGHLIGHT RAPE CRISES ON RIKERS

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Art Therapist & JAC member BRITTNEY KATHRYN KNAPP’S ARTIST STATEMENT: “As an artist, and as a survivor of institutional rape, I thought it was important to dive into the making of this artwork without fear, as fear is what has held many of us from speaking out on this issue in the past.  Although the images are powerful and bring up painful feelings, I felt it was important to challenge the stigma that has repelled people from addressing this epidemic, and create a more literal visual representation of the specific issues faced by women who have been sexually abused in  jails,.  Without freedom, incarcerated women are especially vulnerable, and often their basic needs are unmet.  Corrections officers are given the position of caregivers, assigned to protect incarcerated people.  Officers who sexually abuse the individuals they are responsible for prey on the powerless.  For many victims of sexual violence in jail there seems to be no escape from their attackers, and fear of continued abuse keeps them from reporting the crimes.  Fear, shame, guilt and helplessness are some of the emotions I have touched on in the narrative of my artwork.  Although many survivors have been bound by these emotions in the past, facing the reality of this epidemic head on can lead to empowerment, raise awareness and propel further actions to end sexual violence in New York City jails.”

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