In the Inez Greenberg Gallery...

Out of the Abyss: William Murray and the Prison Art Project

April 12 – May 17, 2013

Reception: Friday, April 12, 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Artist Talk: Wednesday, May 8, 7:00 pm
Discussion Panel: Thursday, May 16, 7:00 pm

After more than 30 years of working as an art instructor for the Minnesota Department of Corrections at the Stillwater State Prison, artist William Murray has come away with a lifetime of stories, personal experiences, a wealth of creative inspiration, and a very unique perspective on the world of crime and punishment.

“Out of the Abyss” will feature two separate bodies of work. One will include work by Murray’s inmate students, many of whom found solace and healing in the act of art making. The other body of work will be Murray’s most recent expression of art. These boxed assemblages reflect his struggle to make sense of and cope with the constant presence of crime and criminals in his life throughout the past thirty years.

This challenging exhibition will bring viewers face to face with the duality of redemption.

Read More:
Walking on Razor Blades through Stillwater Prison:
AAn Artist's Journey

Star Tribune Article

About William Murray

William Murray was born in St. Paul and grew up in Bloomington. Before beginning his painting career, Bill served in the Coast Guard on the Great Lakes and trapped lobster in Nova Scotia. He holds a BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and an MFA from the University of Minnesota. From 1977 to 2003, Bill was the fine arts instructor at the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Stillwater. In 2001, his work won first prize in Artist Magazine’s landscape competition. Bill and his wife Angie share their St. Paul home with three cats and two dogs. Bill is represented by Groveland Gallery in Minneapolis. Bill’s work on the Out of the Abyss exhibition is supported by The McKnight Foundation through the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council’s Next Step Fund.

NEAThis project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.




Behind Bars/Beyond Bars: An Exploration of the Impact of Arts Programming on Incarcerated Persons

April 16, 4:00 – 5:30 pm
At this interactive panel discussion, four distinguished presenters will address topics such as the role of rehabilitation in punishment and the unique contributions of arts programming to the rehabilitation of inmates.

For more information or to register.

Out of the Abyss
Untitled, paint on corrugated cardboard
by inmate artist, Bill Fergus

Out of the Abyss
Box of Nightmares, mixed media assemblage
by William Murray

Gallery Hours