All the work I've presented to you thus far has, I hope, evoked some sort of emotional connection to the piece and the designer behind it. One of my goals here is to create a forum of understanding and conversation so that we may question, learn, and become conscious of the stories supporting the art. This is something I experienced firsthand when I discovered The Imprisoned Calendar, designed by Jason Dean of The Best Part. Part functional, part historical, largely architectural, the calendar illustrates the passage of time over nine years through the eyes of a prisoner. Each tick mark represents one day for a total of 3,190 days that 775 detainees went through at Guantánamo Bay.
I was fortunate to be able to speak with Jason about his ideology behind this piece, and came to ascertain his passion for civil rights, justice, and the overall system of imprisonment. Through his research, he has discovered the unfortunate but true methodology in which the military sometimes penalizes its offenders, at times controversially so. It was this knowledge that he brought over in his development, an enterprise he achieved via interlacing the feelings of helplessness and interminability with the action a person takes when drawing in a single tick mark day by day. This same calculation of the clock moving forward is also something used by prisoners today, thus adding a second layer of junction between the people who use the calendar and the people for whom this calendar represents.
The simplicity and honesty of this work more than merits a second glance. It touches a topic many of us are afraid to broach upon. Jason makes it worth our while to at least try.