Correctional Service Canada Accommodation Guidelines: Mental Healthcare Facility
Pipe and drape
Blackwood Gallery, Ontario
Image credit - Toni Hafkenscheid
Correctional Service Canada Accommodation Guidelines: Mental Healthcare Facility 10m2 x 2 is a sculptural artwork based on Correctional Service Canada’s (CSC) “Federal Correctional Facilities Accommodation Guidelines.” Obtained in 2015 via an access-to-information request, this 700-page document is used by CSC for the building, maintenance, and everyday operations of prisons. In a section named “Mental Healthcare Facility,” CSC outlines the locations and spatial dimensions required for waiting rooms, bathrooms, and staff offices for the mental health wing in a prison. People with severe trauma and/or mental illnesses, due to a lack of resources for their care on the outside, are disproportionately imprisoned by CSC. Parallel to this, symptoms of mental illness increase when people are incarcerated; the notion of “care” in a carceral context is thus an oxymoron, as the conditions of imprisonment are incongruent with treatment or rehabilitation.
Correctional Service Canada Accommodation Guidelines: Mental Healthcare Facility 10m2 x 2 consists of two closed structures that fill the New Gallery space, referring specifically to the 10m2 minimum spatial requirements for mental healthcare waiting rooms and treatment rooms. Within the gallery these spaces are constructed out of rented “pipe and drape,” a type of temporary architecture often used for dividing spaces within warehouses, stadiums, office buildings, and other open environments. “Walls” of pipe and drape hang from ceiling to floor, recalling dividers from ambiguous institutional spaces, like hospital curtains or cubicle separators — a provisional architecture that both reveals and hides. Once the exhibition period is over, the materials are returned to the rental company to be used again, suggesting that structures of incarceration circulate widely throughout society. The rooms take up most of the exhibition space; unable to enter the structures, viewers are thus constrained to the rest of the gallery with limited room to move.
 Fiona G. Kouyoumdjian, Andrée Schuler, Stephen W. Hwang and Flora I. Matheson, “Research on the Health of People Who Experience Detention or Incarceration in Canada: A Scoping Review,” BMC Public Health 15, no. 419 (April 25, 2015), accessed August 12, 2016, doi:10.1186/s12889-015-1758-6.
 Peter Collins, “The Pathology of Rehabilitation,” Scapegoat 7 (Fall/Winter 2014): 217–32, accessed January 12, 2015, http://www.scapegoatjournal.org.