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“Expressions Unbound: An Inmate’s Exploration of Art” exhibit unveiled Sept. 8 at Colorado State University Pueblo

Release Date: August 30, 2023

Gena Alfonso

Director of Communications/PIO

Marketing, Communications & Community Relations


Expressions Unbound: Time, space, and self - an inmate’s exploration of art,” a student art show features the work of Colorado State University Pueblo Independent Study student, Christopher Levitt. This unique exhibit highlights Levitt’s diverse range of artistic expressions developed within the walls of a correctional facility. The event is scheduled at CSU Pueblo’s Art and Music Building in the Art Gallery on the lower level, on September 8th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The exhibit will run until November 22. Admission is free and open to the public.  

“As an incarcerated artist, I was cut off from the art world, a castaway floating on an easel in an endless ocean,” Levitt said. “I was found by the incredible staff of CSU Pueblo’s Extended Studies. They pulled me from the water and gave me a place to belong, to grow, and to shine as an artist.”

Proceeds from his art sales will go toward a newly established scholarship, The Levitt Fund, which he helped create as a way to ensure other incarcerated individuals have the opportunity to take art classes and further their education at CSU Pueblo. “I hope this scholarship brings more incarcerated artists out of obscurity and brings more art education to those who are incarcerated,” Levitt said. “This scholarship also allows not only more inmates to be exposed to art education, but I’m hoping that it will encourage that inmate who qualifies for that scholarship to turn around and make their cube mate or someone else at the prison say, ‘Let me teach you what I learned.’”

Levitt submitted vivid paintings and captivating multimedia installations for the CSU Pueblo art class he is taking through the Independent Study correspondence program offered by the Division of Extended Studies. The work showcases Levitt’s imagination and originality.  

“A lot of people think prison can be a violent place. There are a lot of difficulties in prison but the most damaging and harmful aspect of prison is the boredom we experience and the purposelessness that we experience,” Levitt said. “And in addition to a college education, a person being able to learn how to draw or how to paint means these are skills that can help pull an inmate through those harder times where the boredom is becoming so drastically overwhelming. It provides the inmate with more outlets and a greater ability to express themselves in a place where their voices really don’t matter - where how they feel, what they think, what we say doesn’t account for anything.”

“We are thrilled to showcase Christopher’s work. His passion and work ethic are extremely evident through the different pieces he has created and his dedication to his coursework through the Independent Study program,” Dean of Extended Studies Dr. Kathryn Starkey said. “We are excited to share his passion with the public. Christopher’s talent, creativity, and perseverance are something to celebrate, and we look forward to the growth of this scholarship fund to help facilitate more students being able to achieve their dreams of obtaining their education.”  

If you would like to make a donation to The Levitt Fund, please contact the Division of Extended Studies at 719.549.2319. The Levitt Fund will also be a featured crowd-funding campaign during CSU Pueblo’s 2023 Give Day.

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