about the program

California Arts in Corrections


Arts in Corrections is a partnership between the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) and the California Arts Council designed to have a positive impact on the behavior and attitudes of people experiencing incarceration, promoting interpersonal and social transformation both inside and outside of the boundaries of their institutions.

California’s Arts in Corrections program is made possible by funding from the Division of Rehabilitative Programs at CDCR.

Since the program’s re-launch in the 2013-14 fiscal year, CDCR’s investment has increased from $2.5 million in the first two years to an $8 million annual commitment. 


Administered by the California Arts Council, services provided span the full spectrum of art disciplines, with organizations offering instruction in visual; literary; media; performing; and cultural, folk and traditional arts.

As of June 2017, arts programming is provided in all 35 state adult correctional institutions.

About the partners

California Arts Council


The mission of the California Arts Council, a state agency, is to advance California through the arts and creativity.

The Arts in Corrections program is deeply tied to the California Arts Council’s belief in the power of the arts to inspire change, transformation, and growth.  With each arts engagement comes a new opportunity to tap an individual's creativity, illustrate their potential, and strengthen resolve. 

Learn more at www.arts.ca.gov →


California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation


CDCR enhances public safety through safe and secure incarceration of offenders, effective parole supervision, and rehabilitative strategies to successfully reintegrate offenders into our communities.

The goal of the Arts in Corrections program is to expose offenders to courses where they can express themselves therapeutically through drawing, writing, dancing, poetry, acting, and other artistic methods.

Learn more at www.cdcr.ca.gov →