jackie sumell is a multidisciplinary artist and prison abolitionist inspired most by the lives of everyday people. Her work has been successfully anchored at the intersection of activism, education, and art for over a decade, and it has been exhibited extensively throughout the U.S. and Europe. She has been the recipient of multiple residencies and fellowships including, but not limited to, an A Blade of Grass Fellowship, Robert Rauschenberg Artist as Activist Fellowship, Soros Justice Fellowship, and Eyebeam Project Fellowship. Sumell’s collaboration with Herman Wallace (a prisoner-of-consciousness and member of the “Angola 3”) was the subject of the Emmy Award-Winning documentary Herman’s House (Best Artistic Documentary 2013). Sumell’s work with Herman has positioned her at the forefront of the public campaign to end solitary confinement in the United States.
Jackie’s work explores the intersection of social sculpture, mindfulness practices, and prison abolition. She received a B.S. from the College of Charleston, and M.F.A. from Stanford University. Sumell currently resides in New Orleans Louisiana where she continues to work on Herman’s House, Solitary Gardens, and several other community generated, advocacy based projects.