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Prison Writing Exhibit ‘SEEN’ Is Made Even Richer with Portraits


By Jim Walsh

“I know all these men. I ate prison burritos with these men,” said Kevin Reese, softly, nodding reverently at the photos and words of his fellow writers and former prisoners that surrounded him last Thursday evening in a ballroom at the InterContinental Saint Paul Riverfront Hotel. Two months upon his release from prison, Reese is one of the writers and poets featured in “SEEN,” an exhibit presented by the criminal justice reform/storytelling project We Are All Criminals in collaboration with the Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop that opened Thursday in St. Paul. The exhibit is particularly groundbreaking, as the Department of Corrections recently lifted its ban on media photography in prisons, which allowed project photographer Emily Baxter to shoot candid portraits of the writers.

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