Beyond the Wall Exhibition

All Day Event

Friday, July 18 – Sunday, August 24, 2014
Opening Reception: Friday, July 18, 2014, 6:00 – 9:00 PM


PPS Guild creating hand-made birdhouses

This summer, Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens (PMG), which aims to inspire creativity and community engagement, partners with the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program to proudly display works by the Restorative Justice Program in Beyond the Wall.


Beyond the Wall features paintings, sketches, mixed-media pieces, and other artwork created by youth who have had contact with the juvenile justice system, inmates at the State Correctional Institution at Graterford, and returning citizens.


The exhibition was developed and organized by the Mural Arts Program, whose mission is to unite artists and communities through a collaborative process, rooted in the traditions of mural-making, to create art that transforms public spaces and individual lives. Two of their community efforts are The Guild – a paid apprenticeship program in which participants are mentored by professionals and learn job readiness skills – and the Restorative Justice Program.


Globally, restorative justice practices can be viewed as an alternative to incarceration and revenge, enabling all parties to communicate, attempt to understand what has happened to the community, and then proceed to healing and restoration. These tasks can be accomplished through various means, from traditional talking circles to formal victim/offender mediation conferences. Restorative justice practices help to unify communities affected by crime and to transform community members divided by the criminal justice system.



Photograph by Lisa Boughter

Beyond the Wall incorporates the concepts of restorative justice through art instruction, mural-making, and community service work. Current inmates, probationers and parolees, and youth who have had contact with the juvenile justice system are given the opportunity to learn new skills and make a positive contribution to their communities. Almost 400 inmates and youth in residential placement centers are engaged in Mural Arts’ Restorative Justice Program, which collaborates with other city efforts such as the Youth Violence Reduction Partnership (YVRP).


Join Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, the Mural Arts Program, artists, friends, and family, for an evening of art and conversation during the pay-what-you-wish opening reception on Friday, July 18, 2014; from 6:00 – 9:00 PM. Beyond the Wall will be on display in PMG’s gallery spaces from Friday, July 18 until Sunday, August 24, 2014.