With the grand opening of the new Lorton Workhouse Arts Center only a few weeks away the final preparations for the new gallery and artist's studios is almost complete. While touring the grounds recently to look at the progress and talk with the center director I came across another reminder of how far the prison site has come in the last few years.
Tucked away at the back of the prison site on buildings that have not yet been renovated is a reminder of the prisoners who once counted down the days until they were released. Art work still painted on the walls of cell blocks. I'm sure someone knows who painted these pictures and it would be interesting to learn if the artist's time at prison turned their lives around or whether these murals are the legacy of a life that continued down the wrong road. The plan is to leave these murals in place when the buildings are renovated and it seems fitting considering that the jewel of the property is artist studios and gallery space.
Watching the transformation Lorton Prison over the last few years has shown with carefully planning that not every old building needs to be razed in order for something new to grow. The grand opening of the first set of buildings is September 19th to 27th. Mark your calendars and buy your tickets now to join us for the gala grand opening!
©2008. Cindy Jones "A reminder of Prison Life in Lorton VA" All Rights Reserved