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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Writing by offenders at RE:FORM

arts by offenders, secure patients and detainees from the 2015 Koestler Awards

RE-FORM - Warrior, HM Prison Guernsey, Ed King Silver Award for Portraits 2015

Warrior, HM Prison Guernsey, Ed King Silver Award for Portraits 2015

RE:FORM is the UK’s annual national showcase of arts by prisoners, offenders on community sentences, secure psychiatric patients and immigration detainees. It is the eighth exhibition in an ongoing partnership between the Koestler Trust and Southbank Centre.

Re:Form was curated by Southbank Centre and the Koestler Trust to showcase many of the pieces chosen for Koestler Awards by over 150 arts professionals including Carol Ann Duffy, Speech Debelle, the BFI and Hot Chip. Specially commissioned texts by artists Jeremy Deller and Alan Kane, curator and writer Shama Khanna, editor of Afterall Books Caroline Woodley and Koestler Award-winner Ben add insight and context.

Working alongside Southbank Centre exhibition hosts, to welcome visitors and invigilate the exhibition, are ex-offenders, specially recruited, trained and employed by the Koestler Trust. As well as gaining unique work experience and new skills, the hosts deepen visitors’ engagement with the exhibition, enabling audiences to hear first-hand how the arts reflect and enrich the lives of people in secure and criminal justice settings.

1 Oct — 29 Nov 2015
Daily, 10am—11pm

A partnership of:

koestler-trust        southbank-centre        national-offender-management-service

Exhibition Supporters:

arts-council-england       sodexo       partnership-in-care