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Inmates Showcase Artwork at "Beyond the Bars' Exhibit - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Inmates Showcase Artwork at "Beyond the Bars' Exhibit

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Inmates at the Albemarle Charlottesville Regional Jail are participating in something positive and productive. Offenders showcased their artwork at the opening night of an exhibit at the jail on Friday night.

The 'Beyond the Bars' exhibit is part of the inmate art program.  It offers the inmates a way to express their creativity.

The art program is taught by area artists who volunteer their talents. The program has about 100 students per year.  

The exhibit features dozens of paintings and features a particular theme - forgiving darkness. The theme, created by one of the students, is about moving from a negative part of your life to a more positive one.

Organizers say it's a great learning experience.

"It gives people an opportunity to learn about an art form that they may never have had the opportunity to participate in and learn that they actually have talents that they've never explored before," said Phyllis Back, program director.

Half of the proceeds will go to the Charlottesville Abundant Life Ministries.  The other half will be used to purchase supplies for the classes.

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