New York State Council on the Arts and New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision Enter Second Year of Innovative Arts in Corrections NYS Program

Apr 01, 2024 8:00 am

Wave Farm, a New York Based Non-Profit, Facilitates 12-Week Workshops Across 10 Facilities Over Two Years

The New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) and the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (NYS DOCCS) are pleased to announce the grantees and workshops for the 2024 winter sessions of Arts in Corrections NYS, a program to facilitate and support arts programming inside ten NYS DOCCS facilities across New York State. A regrant program of NYSCA, Arts in Corrections is facilitated by Wave Farm, a nonprofit New York State arts organization, working closely with DOCCS.

Arts in Corrections NYS supports non-profit arts organizations, in partnership with visiting artists, to design and facilitate a series of 12-week, in-person workshops, providing systemimpacted individuals with once-a-week programming in a variety of disciplines including the visual arts, electronic media/film, music, and literature. Following each session, selected workshops repeat to serve a new group of individuals, continuing through 2024. Successfully piloted between 2019 and 2021 as CreativityWorksNYS, the initial program provided positive data and feedback about the value of arts in changing the participants’ attitudes, emotional management, and intellectual flexibility.

“Through the work of Wave Farm and DOCCS on this ongoing strategic initiative, participants are developing individualized skills and resources through their engagement with the arts,” said Erika Mallin, Executive Director of NYSCA, “proving once again that New York’s hardworking arts and culture sector is an essential resource, serving individuals and communities all across our state.”

NYS DOCCS Acting Commissioner Daniel F. Martuscello III said, “The Department is committed to the successful rehabilitation of those in our care and custody and as such, we recognize that the pathway through the rehabilitative process may look different for everyone. For some, this pathway is through the use of alternate forms of self-expression, such as music, poetry, artwork and dance. In partnering with NYSCA on this project, we have been able to offer this unique, creative, and diverse programming at facilities statewide and have seen individuals discover talents previously unshared, personal growth and experience the healing that can come with exploration of the Arts.”

“We are honored to facilitate this important program, and couldn’t be more excited about the quality of the workshops. It has been a pleasure to work closely with NYS DOCCS on this initiative. Arts in Corrections NYS wouldn’t be possible without the remarkable support of NYS DOCCS staff, the organizational grantees, and the talented visiting artists involved, and we are grateful.” Said Galen Joseph-Hunter, Wave Farm Executive Director.

Over the course of these artist-taught workshops, participants will have the opportunity to deepen artistic exploration and engage in a variety of creative disciplines. The workshops will provide education, training, and positive constructive criticism for each participant’s artistic endeavors.

Arts in Corrections NYS Winter 2024 Grantees and Workshops:

The Art Effect of the Hudson Valley (Dutchess County) — Music and Video Production, with Adam and Zach Reid (Otisville Correctional Facility) In this workshop, participants will write original songs and lyrics, record and produce the songs, and then create music videos for their songs. Participants will gain experience in songwriting, audio recording, lyrics writing, music selection, audio mixing, wordplay, and creativity, and conveying ideas through music. Participants will additionally gain introductory skills in video production and video editing.

Bardavon 1869 Opera House (Dutchess County) — Mixed-Level Poetry Writing, with Gretchen Primack (Coxsackie Correctional Facility) In this workshop, participants will explore their creativity through poetry. Each class will include a warm-up exercise and close reading of various published poems to see how they work. Participants will write, critique, and revise their own poems.

CREATE Council on the Arts (Greene County) — Personal Storytelling: What’s Your Story?, with Caitlin Langstaff and Christina Thyssen (Green Haven Correctional Facility) In this workshop, participants will discover the craft of writing and sharing a compelling story. Storytelling will be celebrated and practiced as a way to build community and help make sense of the world we live in. Participants will learn public speaking techniques, acquire skills to craft compelling narratives, and perform stories with ease and authenticity.

MovingPotential (Columbia County) — Moving Potential / Body Stories, with Sondra Loring (Greene Correctional Facility) In this workshop, Participants will explore a range of movement based practices that include performance, dance, and choreographic disciplines. Participants will gain an understanding of improvisational performance techniques, somatic study, and basic experiential anatomy.

Great Lakes Guitar Society (Onondaga County) — One Mic Project, with Chris Cresswell (Mohawk Correctional Facility) In this workshop, participants will learn and practice the basics of songwriting and music production, gaining the foundation to create their own lyrics and music. Introductions to songwriting and musical composition will provide participants with the skills to experiment with both group and individual creative musical production.

Justice Juvenile Arts and Media Network (Dutchess County) — Art Practices on the Edge of Possibilities, with Maggie Hazen and Eliza Doyle (Shawangunk Correctional Facility) This sculpture workshop will introduce participants to the fundamentals of constructing 2- dimensional and 3-dimensional works of art using unconventional resources and mediums. Participants will work with an assortment of materials using unique techniques, traditions, and methods. Participants will produce creative artworks, build an artistic portfolio, develop their personal artistic practice, and learn new creative strategies and concepts.

Rochester Contemporary Art Center (Monroe County) — Framing Freedom, with Ya’qub Shabazz (Groveland Correctional Facility) Framing Freedom will introduce participants to elements of art history, color theory, painting and drawing techniques, interpreting fine art, and mindfulness. Participants will learn how to create visual art and discuss their work with their peers. The workshop will introduce materials including watercolors, pastels, and acrylic paint for themed weekly sessions.

Shandaken Projects (New York County) — Art and Autobiography, with Nicholas Weist (Sullivan Correctional Facility) In this course, participants will learn creative communication skills including drawing, painting, printmaking, personal writing, and bookmaking. During class time and in short homework assignments, participants will use these skills to tell their own stories in narrative, figurative, and abstract ways. The workshop will conclude with a final project by each participant that demonstrates his new skills and tells his own story in a unique way.

The Thrive Project (Franklin County) — Circle Drumming, with Chris Bohl (Franklin Correctional Facility) In this workshop, Participants will explore a range of circle drumming techniques and a variety of drums. The workshop will introduce circle drumming structures, histories, and improvisational exercises. A drum circle is an instant rhythm experience for all ages and abilities – no musical experience required.

The Thrive Project (Franklin County) — Introduction to Drawing Class, with Geoff Cobb (Bare Hill Correctional Facility) In this workshop, participants will acquire introductory drawing skills using references including images from magazines, natural organic material, and each other. Participants will create drawings to be included in a portfolio that will be presented in the last session.

About the New York State Council on the Arts The mission of the New York State Council on the Arts is to foster and advance the full breadth of New York State’s arts, culture, and creativity for all. To support the ongoing recovery of the arts across New York State, the Council on the Arts will award $127 million in FY 2024, serving over 2,000 arts organizations and artists across all 10 state regions. The Council on the Arts further advances New York's creative culture by convening leaders in the field and providing organizational and professional development opportunities and informational resources. Created by Governor Nelson Rockefeller in 1960 and continued with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature, the Council is an agency that is part of the Executive Branch. For more information on NYSCA, please visit, and follow NYSCA's Facebook page, on X @NYSCArts and Instagram @NYSCouncilontheArts.

About NYS DOCCS DOCCS’ mission is to improve public safety by providing a continuity of appropriate treatment services in safe and secure facilities where the needs of the incarcerated population are addressed and where individuals under its' custody are successfully prepared for release and parolees under community supervision receive supportive services that facilitate the successful completion of their sentence. DOCCS recognizes the therapeutic value of offering arts-based programming to individuals in enhancing communication skills, supporting healthy forms of expression and increasing self-awareness. DOCCS’ vision is to enhance public safety by having incarcerated persons return home under supportive supervision less likely to revert to criminal behavior. By affording individuals the opportunity to participate in creative and expressive programming, DOCCS is seeking to enrich the incarceration experience and bolster the success rates of those returning to the community.

About Wave Farm Wave Farm is an international transmission arts organization driven by experimentation with the electromagnetic spectrum. We cultivate creative practices in radio and support artists and nonprofits in their cultural endeavors. Based in New York’s Upper Hudson Valley, Wave Farm is a media arts center, media platform, and arts service organization. Wave Farm offers interdisciplinary outdoor installations, residencies and fellowships, and a research library. We operate FM radio station WGXC and host many online radio channels. Wave Farm provides fiscal sponsorship, consultation, and grants to artists and organizations. For more information, please visit

For more information about Arts in Corrections NYS, visit