Birds of Freedom 


2018 Birds of Freedom

Site: 2501 Glass Street 

Artists: 75 participants from the Hamilton County Jail 

Partners: Hamilton County Sheriffs Office

Description: Seventy-five inmates at the Hamilton County Jail collaborated to create a mural featuring birds in flight, a symbol for their release from incarceration and a declaration of their capacity to have a positive impact on their community in beautifying the East Chattanooga neighborhood. The inmates were responsible for every aspect of the mural outcome: collaborating to define their collective message, learning to draw and paint their birds, and curating the final composition.

For many who had never drawn or painted, this experience represents the ability to meet challenges and accomplish what they thought they could not. Birds of Freedom provides an opportunity for viewers to rethink assumptions of civic participation and the effect each of our actions can have on our community.

Art classes for Birds of Freedom were funded by the Tennessee Arts Commission.