On the heels of her curating an exhibition of art by detainees at Guantánamo, Erin Thompson’s article Art after Guantánamo will examine the intertwined questions of the role of art at Guantánamo, the perception of Guantánamo in the Muslim world, and what is owed to wrongfully detained former inmates. A critical exploration of detainees’ lives through the lens of their hopes, this article hopes to shift cultural assumptions about the detainees and encourage readers to see detainees as individuals and as artists, rather than as suspects or victims.

Erin Thompson received her PhD in art history from Columbia University, where she was a classicist, studying ancient Greek and Roman art and Near Eastern art. She also received her law degree from Columbia Law School, studying the laws that prevent the looting and smuggling of antiquities. She co-curated Ode to the Sea: Art from Guantánamo, an exhibition of art made by detainees at the military prison camp known as Guantánamo Bay.