The Workshop (2018)

Dryden Goodwin

Substance misuse doesn’t just present problems for users. Many under-age young people have lost their liberty due to drug-related crimes. They are well aware of how our society's desire for drugs fuels a never-ending cycle of violence, crime, addiction, exploitation and in some cases, murder. Working out how society should respond is complex. Working out how art can interpret this is even more so.

Created as a result of a collaborative artistic project co-led by spoken word artist Mr.Gee and theatre and drama director Angus Scott-Miller, working with young people at Oakhill Secure Training Centre the Oakhill Substance Misuse Team, and Kim Wolff,  Director of King’s Forensics, King’s College London.

The Making of The Workshop

We invited a group of young offenders to explore experiences and attitudes to substance misuse through art and science. The boys found their own unique voices through theatrical performances and poetry developed with Mr Gee and Angus Scott-Miller. Dryden documented this process and worked with the boys and their art teacher to create experimental drawings including his own fragmentary studies of them. Dryden’s visual essay, combining drawing, photography and text, reveals and reflects on the boys’ process of exploring the sensory and emotional effects of drugs on their lives.


About the contributor(s) 

Dryden Goodwin's practice incorporates drawing, often in combination with photography and live action video; he creates gallery installations, films, projects in public space, etchings, works on-line and soundtracks. Dryden’s work often takes on an element of documentary, using multiple strategies to uncover hidden events.

Mr Gee is a spoken word artist, comedian, musician and presenter. He uses his poetry and music to engage with hard to reach communities including young people, older people and prisoners, and has run hugely popular poetry workshops for these groups.

Angus Scott-Miller is a theatre director who specialises in working with young people.

Professor Kim Wolff is an expert in Addiction Science, her main research area concerning the pharmacological aspects of illicit drug use in pregnancy and clubbers. She works as an expert advisor to the government on drug use and driving and was instrumental in the introduction of the new drug-driving legislation for which Kim received an MBE.

Oakhill Secure Training Centre is a residential secure training centre for boys aged 12 to 18, on remand or sentenced to custody.