Reality

Will Prison Brides’ Joseph succeed as an artist?

Prison Brides’ Joseph took up abstract art as a prison hobby and he is now planning on turning it into his fulltime career.

If you have been tuning in weekly to watch Lifetime’s Prison Brides, you will know that recidivism is one of the biggest issues looming over the couples who which been lucky enough to start their lives together on the outside.

And for good reason, as the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) determined in 2021 that at least 82% of inmates released from state prisons in 2008 (across 24 different states), were arrested again within the first 10 years after their initial release.

The BJS also found that parolees have an even higher chance of reoffending, and a quicker road to get there, as just under half of the prisoners included in their 2012 study returned to prison within 5 years as a result of a parole or probation violation.

The reaction to Joseph’s art

Avid Prison Brides fans will already know that Joseph Whitaker is one of the very first former inmates who  was released from prison on the show.

And it seems like Joseph is looking to beat the odds during his parole, by focusing on his passion for creating abstract art.

However, while Joseph has said that he is quite used to hearing criticism about his chosen path, it seems like some Prison Brides fans are still not quite convinced that he will be able to make it as an artist in the outside world.

Comments from fans lamenting the fact that Joseph gave up his steady job  to pursue a career in art range from “Joseph is like a teenager with a backward approach, putting the cart before the horse” to “I hate to burst any bubbles but his artwork is not original at all.”

And Joseph seemingly still has quite a ways to go if he wants to be taken seriously as an artist.

Summarizing Joseph’s journey

There is so much going on in any given episode of Prison Brides that it can be easy to miss some of the details about each inmate’s (or former inmate’s) case.

So, in case you missed it, the most important details about Joseph’s journey before and during Prison Brides’ first season can be summarized as follows:

Date Event
April 2012 Joseph is charged with armed robbery at the age of 19.
2013 Joseph starts practicing his abstract art from behind bars.
January 24, 2023 Joseph is released from prison and launches his artist brand, FIAZKO.
January 10, 2024 Prison Brides officially premieres on Lifetime.

Why Joseph started creating abstract art

Prisoners take up many different hobbies to help pass the time behind bars. But Joseph has shared that diving into the world of abstract art was a true escape for him, while he was serving out his 11 year sentence.

According to Joseph, he initially started out making very small pieces of art on whichever pieces of scrap paper he could find.

But now that he is out of prison, he has access to all different kinds of materials for his projects. Joseph has even gone digital now and you can actually see and purchase some of Joseph’s art from his website.

Joseph’s art show

While there will always be people who doubt that Joseph will be able to make it as a serious artist, he has already started building a reputation for himself within the Michigan art community.

In fact, he has even been approached for a solo exhibition at AllArtWorks in Grand Rapids.

This show, titled “Love, Art & Redemption” took place on August 26, 2023, and featured artworks made by Joseph whilst he was incarcerated, and artworks made after his release.

Chris Protas, the curator responsible for this exhibit shared that Joseph’s work is “an amazing example of the impact art can have on a person’s life.”

Joseph’s future plans

While Joseph has clearly been working on his career in art, in addition to his newfound reality television fame – he has not announced any official plans for the future outside of inspiring others and sharing his passion, that is.

If you are caught up on the most recent episode of Prison Brides, you will know that the above-mentioned art exhibition was actually featured in the “What Did You Do” episode and that he ended up selling a record-breaking quantity of pieces during this show.

It does not seem like Joseph has any other shows lined up at the moment, but according to his LinkedIn profile, he seems to be dipping his toes into the AI art market next, with a new venture called AI SKILL TEAM.