The Garrison

Garrison: noun; the troops stationed in a fortress or town to defend it.
Garrison: person; William Lloyd Garrison, a prominent American abolitionist, journalist, suffragist, and social reformer. Best known as the editor of the abolitionist newspaper, The Liberator, which promoted the "immediate emancipation" of slaves in the United States.

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The Garrison

The Garrison is a mobile abolition unit; a roving classroom; an educational task force; a vehicle that will deploy “pop-up” forums and build Solitary Gardens in public spaces and partnering institutions..The Garrison is a retrofitted ambulance that transforms into a makeshift classroom for prison abolition and, by proxy, a roving billboard, blackboard, and sounding board for those most impacted by mass incarceration. The Garrison functions as a contemporary pop-up model of the American Anti-Slavery Society of the 1800’s, an abolition initiative founded by William Lloyd Garrison and Arthur Tappan, which featured leadership over the years from activists such as Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass. The unit will honor Garrison’s efficacious work, fulfilling the need to station abolitionists throughout a hyper-incarcerated nation. Images of the development of the truck and the inaugural tour can be seen in the image carousel below. The Garrison was generously funded through A Blade Of Grass, The Rauschenberg Foundation and The Ford Foundation.

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Rauschenberg Residency

jackie spent 5-weeks at the Robert Rauschenberg Residency in Captiva Island retrofitting the ambulance into The Garrison, learning how to weld and reframing the cab. She collaborated directly with Bob Rauschenberg’s fabricator, the ever amazing Matt Hall. Pictures of the residency, the tour and The Garrison’s amazing transformation are in the image carousel below.

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The Tour

The inaugural tour took place from late August 2018- October 2018. Artist jackie sumell and her co-pilot, death row exoneree Rodricus Crawford tour the East Coast setting up Garden Beds at Growing Change, Lower East Side Girls Club, Sidewalk Ends and The Village in Philadelphia. This tour finishes with a Solitary Garden at Houston’s radical space SHAPE in collaboration with Project Row Houses.

Check out the images below to see the transformation of the Garrison from retired ambulance to Prison Abolition Vehicle on tour