Gary Tyler

Gary Tyler is a fiber artist, living and working in Los Angeles, California. For over four decades, Tyler has been working at the intersection of art and social justice, teaching himself how to quilt to support the Angola Prison Hospice program, where he was a volunteer. For three decades, Tyler was the President of the Angola Prison drama program, using the position to promote a culture of community, civic responsibility, and optimism. At the age of 16, Tyler was sentenced to death for a crime he did not commit. Though his case was the subject of international outcry, the artist spent 42 years in Angola State Penitentiary in Louisiana, before being released at the age of 57. Although his artistic practice was born out of injustice, it eminently generates hope. Tyler is a 2019 and 2020 Art Matters Awardee, and his work is in the collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.

Gary Tyler is represented by Detroit-based gallery Library Street Collective. Contact LCS for more information.

Right of Return Project

Gary will expand on his series of portraits of people on death row using quilting fabrics and intricate patterns to catalyze awareness and action toward a more just and compassionate criminal legal system.