Paul Rucker

Baltimore and Seattle

Paul Rucker combines original cello compositions with data visualization and other media to illustrate the disproportional representation of young people of color in juvenile detention, the economics of the prison-industrial complex, the explosive growth of the US prison system, and the relationships among these trends. Read more about his work:

Bio: Paul Rucker is an iCubed Visiting Arts Fellow embedded at the Institute for Contemporary Art at Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a visual artist, musician, and composer who uses visual images and sound to render powerful reflections on racial injustice in America. A native of South Carolina, Rucker’s work investigates the long-term social and economic effects of slavery in the United States, drawing parallels to racially motivated violence, police brutality, mass incarceration, and the criminalization of African Americans. Rucker has presented performances and visual art exhibitions across the country and has collaborated with schools, prisons, and policy institutes to address issues of mass incarceration. His awards include Creative Capital, MAP Fund, Joan Mitchell Painters & Sculptors Grant, Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship, MacDowell Colony Fellowship, and a residency at Maryland Institute College of Art as the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation research fellow in Baltimore, MD. He was awarded a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in 2017.

Paul Rucker Headshot

Photo: Wendy Johnson