Pennants & Poets is an installation and spoken word event.
The Pennants, printed with poems and messages from people who have been directly impacted by incarceration, were created in collaboration with Writers from The Fortune Society and Hour Children Working Women, as well as currently incarcerated writers, for the Offshore project at Socrates Sculpture Park in 2020. In 2021 we began making public art events in which the Writers perform their words with 50 flying pennants as a backdrop. The work has appeared in Dumbo Brooklyn, and PS1-MoMA in Queens where we also led a public pennant-making workshop. New pennants from the workshops are added to the installation.
Each Pennant is 10″ x 20″ stitched screen-printed cotton with interior stiffener and grommets. They are each an edition of x4, with any sales benefiting the contributors.
The combined messages can be installed in interiors, freestanding in public space or on walls, to form a powerful collective call for an end to mass incarceration and support for the millions affected by it.
We are actively seeking to exhibit and perform Pennants and Poets at indoor and outside venues: please inquire at
jp ‘at’ jennypolak.com if you would like to invite us to your location.
Thanks to all those who contributed their writing and voices, to the Fortune Society’s Director of Creative Arts Jamie Maleszka, to Socrates Sculpture Park, Dumbo Arts, and PS1 for support and facilitation.
Photographs by Miguel Alfau, Dread Scott, Ben Krueger (courtesy Fortune Society) and Marissa Alper (courtesy MoMA).
Poets in these photos: Nestor “Panama” Eversley, Erobus Abzu Lamashtu, Helen Taylor and Marvin Wade.