Quetzal and Hummingbirds. Prison art by Jack Morris

quetzal and hummingbirds.Jack Morris. prison art

I bought this some years back at a prison art show at the late, lamented Midnight Special bookstore in Santa Monica, CA. It was done by Jack Morris (no relation) while he was in one of the dreaded Special Housing Units in the California prison system. They allow “no human contact,” which seems torture to me. I know nothing about him. But prisons should be where you go as punishment, not for punishment.

A note on the back from Jack explains how he created it. It’s quite extraordinary.

Color pens, pencils and pastels are not allowed in the “hole.” The colors on this drawing were developed by scraping paper pulp out of old magazines.

Utilizing a rolled up piece of toilet paper, dipped in the pulp, I transfer it onto the drawings.

Additional colors are obtained from the coating of vitamins or coffee.