Category Archives: James Hough

James Hough on redemption within a punitive system

ScanLetter from James Hough on July 1, 2014

Interview #1

Please tell us something about yourself. Feel free to include whatever you feel comfortable or interested in sharing.

My name is James Hough, but all my family and friends call me Yaya. I’m originally from Pittsburgh, PA and I’ve lived in other cities prior to ‘coming’ to prison. I’ve been incarcerated since I was 17 years old – serving LWOP. However, I live as though I will be released from prison. I don’t follow any specific religion, but I am spiritual. I prefer peace and nonviolence in all my interactions. I’ve had more than enough violence for one lifetime. With the exception of diet, I live as healthy as I can (no smoking & drinking- no drugs & gambling). My only regret is taking the human life that put me here. Everyone lost in that event. It always humbles me. Continue Reading

James Hough on art, activism, and ‘freedom culture’

ScanLetter from James Hough on July 31, 2015

Interview #2

Can you tell us more about your practice as a visual artist? When did you begin to pursue art seriously and what motivated that decision on your part?

I’ve always been an artist, as a kid I’d draw and my eyes (mind) was/is very sensitive to visual stimuli. I was also encouraged by my family and school art teachers and comic books, etc.; prior to my crime and incarceration, I had drifted away from art and into the street underworld: drugs, drug selling, weapons, sex, violence. In retrospect I went through a process of intense spiritual death that culminated in my killing another human being and being sentenced to a LWOP (virtual) death sentence. Continue Reading