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The City of London laughs in the face of the plight of disabled people with the erection of a new/ old Damien Hirst monument

7 July 2015

Blog Colin Hambrook

A statue by artist Damien Hirst which according to the Evening Standard “aims to challenge our prejudices around disability” was recently installed next to St. Helen’s Church and opposite the Gherkin in London’s Square Mile. The seven-metre high sculpture, called Charity (2003), is based on a 1960s charity collection box depicting a disabled young girl clutching a teddy bear and a collection tin. The Standard goes on to say that Hirst said he “aims to question...

7/7 on a psychiatric ward

7 July 2015

Blog Dolly Sen

Light on a psych ward

I remember 7/7 very well. I was an inpatient on a psych ward at St Thomas Hospital, and out of nowhere there were convoys of ambulances streaming in the A&E dept of the hospital. There were no more red double decker buses going over the bridge. My mum texted me that there were a series of bombs on london transport. I went into a ward round and maintained the belief the world was too painful to live in. It was an inappropriate response apparently. They didn't show me humanity. That came...

Lloyd Coleman's Dao commission 'Towards Harmony' is premiered by the Paraorchestra to an ovation from the audience

6 July 2015

Blog Trish Wheatley

On Friday 3rd July at Colston Hall in Bristol the British Paraorchestra rounded off the Fast Forward music festival with an impressive concert.  By way of introduction the Paraorchestra's founder and conductor Charles Hazlewood announced that Bristol is to be the new home of the orchestra to a roar of appreciation from the audience. This was an exciting day for the Dao team as the final piece in the programme was the 20 minute long Towards Harmony, commissioned by Dao with funding from...

Who Am I?

6 July 2015

Blog Esther Fox: Distinctive Not Alien

an image of a transparent head with electric connections in the background chromosomes float over the top of a transparent weaving

As I enter the Who Am I gallery http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/WhoAmI/Visit.aspx in the Science Museum I am struck by the scale and futuristic quality of the space.  Space age style pods investigate human character traits and row upon row of large glass cases filled with a multiplicity of objects all explore our understanding of identity. The curator Suzy Antoniw explains to me that this gallery is one of the most popular areas of the Museum and is particularly popular with teenagers....

News: The National Disability Arts Collection and Archive move forward to the next exciting phase

25 June 2015

News

News: The National Disability Arts Collection and Archive move forward to the next exciting phase

NDACA are pleased to announce the success of their Round 2 bid to Heritage Lottery Fund. With the total funding of nearly £1M, including support from Arts Council England and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. Colin Hambrook interviews NDACA Project Director David Hevey about the hopes and ambitions for the NDACA Project, in its exciting next phase of building the dream in 2015-2018

News: Colston Hall takes the lead for BBC Music Day in Bristol

2 June 2015

News

News: Colston Hall takes the lead for BBC Music Day in Bristol

Colston Hall will play a leading role on the first ever BBC Music Day on Friday 5th June 2015 in championing disability and diversity in music and the arts. BBC Music Day will see the Hall welcoming a unique disability youth concert. The day will be a nationwide celebration of music with the aim of connecting communities and...

Review: Birds of Paradise Theatre Company present Crazy Jane

18 June 2015

Feature

Birds of Paradise Theatre's latest production 'Crazy Jane' tells the story of Jane Avril, star of the Moulin Rouge who was immortalised in the iconic posters of Toulouse-Lautrec. Directed by Written by Nicola McCartney and directed by Garry Robson the show has recently toured Scotland. Review by Paul F. Cockburn

Review: Pulse Festival: Ramps on the Moon

10 June 2015

Feature

On 5 June New Wolsey Theatre’s Pulse Festival brought together 60 representatives from the world of theatre for 'Ramps on the Moon': a day of reflection and performance centred around the involvement of Deaf and disabled people in the sector. Liz Porter gives an overview of a day of provocation and discussion.

Discussion: Accessible Edinburgh Fringe?

6 July 2015

Feature

Every August the world’s performers and entertainers flock to Scotland’s capital. Paul F Cockburn asks just how easy is it for disabled artists and audiences to get the most out of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe?

Discussion: Pulse Festival: the uses of BSL and Audio Description in Theatre

30 June 2015

Feature

As part of the Ramps on the Moon event at New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich on 5 June, delegates had the opportunity to sit in on an open rehearsal of Jeni Draper’s Fingersmith’s latest show ‘War Crimes for the Home’ and Sue MacLaine’s ‘Can I Start Again Please.’ Liz Porter responds to the uses of British Sign language and Audio Description in theatre.

Why we are disabled people, not people with disabilities

2 July 2015

Feature

Okay, so what’s the beef with language? Why is it important to us to be named as ‘disabled people’, rather than ‘people with disabilities’. Dr Colin Cameron gives an overview of the Social Model of Disability, which has underpinned the Disability Arts and the Disability Rights Movement over the last 30 years. He explains why 'disability' has come to denote the barrriers disabled people face, rather than the impairments we live...

Gallery: Create: Me, Myself, I: portraits by young people with autism

8 June 2015

Feature

This collection of portrait photographs was taken by young people with autism in a project led by arts charity Create following the theme of 'Me, Myself, I'.  The young people took portraits of each other to explore their identity and the identity of their peers, and in the process developed these fantastically dynamic shots full of movement and life. To create these portraits, the young people worked with Create’s professional photographer Alicia Clarke.  

Poetry: Kuli Kohli: Rag Doll

22 June 2015

Feature

Kuli Kohli was born with mild cerebral palsy in northern India and moved to England at an early age. She is a writer, mother, wife and full-time council worker.  Here she presents a selection from her book ‘Rag Doll’, published in 2014