Rikers Penitentiary/HDM/JATC
murals painted by inmates

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The James A. Thomas Center, formerly the Rikers Island Penitentiary and the House of Detention for Men, is no longer used for inmate housing. The cellblocks off the long main corridor are unoccupied. The offices off the second floor corridor are used for staff work, interviews, conferences and hearings.

In March 2006, for a segment of a planned "Jails of NY" show in its Secrets of NY series, NYCTV Original Productions filmed in one of the cell blocks off the long main corridor in the James A. Thomas Center, formerly known as the Rikers Island Penitentiary. Kelly Choi is host of the "Jails of New York: Secrets Unlocked" show in the NYCTV Original Productions Secrets of New York series.

It premiered May 23rd, Tuesday, but was scheduled to air again Oct. 17th at 8PM, Oct. 18th at 10:30PM and Oct. 21st at 9PM on WNYE. With Time Warner Cable, that's Ch. 25. With Cablevision, that's Ch. 22. With Direct TV, that's Ch. 25 in NY or Ch. 888 in NJ. The show's photo logo (left) -- Kelly Choi in a JATC cell block -- appears here courtesy of NYCTV Original Productions that retains and reserves all rights. Click it to access the web page of NYCTV Original Productions Secrets of New York.

To get to the cell block where Kelly Choi narrated part of the "Jails of NY" show, the NYCTV Original Productions crew and its equipment traveled a portion of the long main corridor of JATC. The corridor appears briefly in the show. On a prior visit without their cameras, the producers had scouted the jail as a film location. They walked JATC's corridors. NYCHS used the occasion as an opportunity to take a series of digital photos of the inmate-painted murals on the corridors' walls. Click the thumbnail corridor image below to begin a "virtual tour" of the inmate-painted murals of JATC's corridors.

Inmate murals along very long main corridor to cell blocks. Some with paint peel-offs.

inmateart01.jpg inmateart02.jpg inmateart03.jpg inmateart04.jpg inmateart05.jpg inmateart06.jpg
inmateart07.jpg inmateart08.jpg inmateart09.jpg inmateart10.jpg inmateart11.jpg inmateart12.jpg
inmateart13.jpg inmateart14.jpg inmateart15.jpg inmateart16.jpg inmateart17.jpg inmateart18.jpg
inmateart19.jpg inmateart20.jpg inmateart21.jpg inmateart22.jpg

Inmate murals along second floor offices corridor. Not as long. None with paint peel-offs.

inmateart24.jpg inmateart25.jpg inmateart26.jpg inmateart27.jpg inmateart28.jpg inmateart29.jpg
inmateart30.jpg inmateart31.jpg inmateart32.jpg inmateart33.jpg inmateart34.jpg inmateart35.jpg

--- To Anton Refregier's WPA mural Home & Family.
Rikers Penitentiary mess hall movie mural
--- To Harold Lehman's Rikers Penitentiary mess hall WPA mural.
--- To Ben Shahn's NY -- Rikers Mural: NYCHS Excerpts.
--- To NYCHS home page.

Copyright © 2006 NYCHS and NYC DOC.