Arts and Justice

Mural with young kids

Initiatives

  • Project Reset

    Operating in Manhattan and the Bronx, Project Reset is a diversion program offering a new response to a low-level arrest that is proportionate, effective, and restorative.

  • Neighbors In Action

    Neighbors in Action works to make the central Brooklyn neighborhoods of Crown Heights and Bedford-Stuyvesant safer and healthier for all.

Publications & Digital Media

  • Webinar

    Arts to Reimagine the System

    The arts make us confident, hopeful, and resilient. Based on decades of research and experience, we know that investing in the arts can help us achieve justice. Watch a conversation between artists, government, and community-based organizations on how investing in the arts allows communities to thrive. 

  • Audio

    "One of These Days We Might Find Us Some Free"

    In 1996, 16-year-old Reginald Dwayne Betts was sentenced to nine years in prison for a carjacking. He spent much of that time reading, and eventually writing. After prison, he went to Yale Law School and published a memoir and three books of poems. But he’s still wrestling with what “after prison” means. This is a conversation about incarceration and the weight of history, both political and personal. Betts's most recent collection of poems is Felon.

  • Audio

    Art vs. Mass Incarceration

    Can art transform the criminal justice system? On this special edition of New Thinking, host Matt Watkins sits down with two New York City artists on the rise—Derek Fordjour and Shaun Leonardo—who both work with our Project Reset to provide an arts-based alternative to court and a criminal record for people arrested on a low-level charge. With the program set to expand city-wide, the three discuss art's potential to expose and contain a racialized criminal justice system.

See All Publications and Digital Media 

News

  • Project Reset is Taking Arrested New Yorkers to the Museum Instead of Court

    NBCLX

    Art is a powerful vehicle for racial and social justice. Project Reset partners with Brooklyn Museum to offer individuals with low-level cases the chance to dispose of the case through the study and creation of art that explores perspectives. In this video, teaching artist, Sophia Dawson, and two participants, Denagee and Aristides, share their experiences with NBCLX.

  • In NYC, Art Class Instead of Prosecution

    CityLab

    A profile of two participants of Project Reset, an early diversion program that provides individuals arrested on low-level, non-violent misdemeanors an alternative to appearing in court and a way out of having a criminal record. As one notes, “Because once you get something on your record, you’re just viewed a different way.”

  • Low-Level Crimes Avoid Court with Art

    WNYC

    People arrested for low-level crimes in Brooklyn are getting a chance to avoid the court system if they participate in an art course offered by our Project Reset. A a two-hour class at the Brooklyn Museum helps them reflect on justice and accountability.

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