Fashion in prison

Cooperation between Tatort Zukunft, the Berlin University of the Arts and the juvenile detention centre Berlin


In our “Learning together” projects we aim to create places of encounter in which people from inside and outside prison come together through educational opportunities.

Last winter semester, Tatort Zukunft e.V. successfully conducted a criminology seminar at Tegel Prison with incarcerated students and students of law and social work (FU Berlin, ASH Berlin) and will continue this format in the coming semester.

Through the feedback from all participants we learned that the encounter with the lived reality of the respective counterpart was tremendously beneficial. In our experience, meeting at eye level in the format of a seminar is very well suited to provide an enriching learning experience in which, in addition to knowledge content and skills, respect for one another is also strengthened.

We are now planning to expand our concept by networking the JSA Berlin and the UdK (University of Art) Berlin to hold a fashion seminar with young people in custody and students of the university.

Aim of the project

For young people held at JSA, educational opportunities and external contacts are important resources for leading a life without future contact with the criminal justice system in the future. In addition to the skills they have learned, networking with students and lecturers can open up new perspectives on their own lives and act as social capital beyond the seminar.

In the format of the seminar, students gain both theoretical insights and practical skills:

All participants of the seminar will engage together on a theoretical level about clothing as a means of communication and fashion as a conscious, individual form of expression. In doing so, the significance of clothing and taste in the formation of identities and affiliations will be addressed and common clichés and prejudices will be examined.

From the very beginning, however, it will be clear that all participants should work together towards a concrete goal and that they should be able to hold a product in their hands at the end of the course. The participants from inside and outside will experience themselves as creative, self-effective people by being involved in the whole working process from the idea to the finished product.

The idea of sustainability shapes the experience of the seminar:

Firstly, the conceptual work should have a socially sustainable effect by teaching students to deal with challenges and to work in a solution-oriented manner.

Secondly, sustainable work should also be done on the product level by processing ecologically sustainable materials in a high-quality manner.

Further projects: