Unlock the talent inside

Since 1962 the Koestler Awards have played a unique, national role in motivating prisoners, secure hospital patients and immigration detainees to take part in the arts. The Koestler Awards are simple and powerful – we reward achievement, build self-confidence and broaden horizons for some of society’s most disadvantaged and marginalised people.

Our work harnesses the uniquely transformative power of the arts to help individuals learn the skills and gain the confidence to live creative, positive and productive lives. Each year we receive more than 7,000 entries from over 3,500 entrants across the UK in 52 categories. More than 2,000 Awards are granted by over 100 esteemed judges, and each year culminates in a curated exhibition at Southbank Centre which showcases the incredible power of the arts to transform lives.

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  • The I and the We

Camille Walala and Sarah Ihler-Meyer at the Koestler Arts Centre

The I and the We

2021 UK exhibition at Southbank Centre

Curated by Camille Walala and Sarah Ihler-Meyer

29 October – 5 December 2021

Exhibition Space, Level 1, Royal Festival Hall

Curated by artist Camille Walala and her sister, curator Sarah Ihler-Meyer, The I and the We will showcase around 200 powerful artworks selected from over 6,400 entries to the 2021 Koestler Awards.

This year’s Koestler Arts UK exhibition of art, music and writing by people in criminal justice settings is back in Level 1 of Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall.

Expect quirky artworks made of found materials, works full of humour and joy, as well as pieces reflecting on loss, relationships and prison life, all created during the pandemic.

More information coming soon.