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Artist and Filmmaker Gary Thomas looks at the relationship between art and film, why it's sometimes uncomfortable, and how he deals with his own 'strands', (including disability), both personally and professionally. He'll also be writing about his own work as well as developing other projects, including films about the Olympics.

A (short) review of Frieze 2011 Art Fair

3 October 2011

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Frieze Art Fair 2011 banner image

As I walked into The Frieze Art Fair I was confronted with a lot of reflected spinning discs which were suspended from atop the marquee, which immediately made me very disorientated. Not a great start, but interesting nonetheless. Anthony Reynolds Gallery, London, had a number of impressive pieces, mainly photographs (which is probably why I liked them) but also paintings and sculpture. Yvonne Lambert, Paris was also fairly impressive, with colourful works in neon as well as paintings with text...

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I don’t need step free access but….

2 September 2011

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So my time at the Edinburgh Festival is almost at an end, I’m staying tonight and going back to Glasgow tomorrow. Two more shows, one late one 11.10pm start, for goodness sake! Though my friend is in it so I really want to see it. Anyway, that aside, it’s been an interesting experience having been here only ever for the film festival. When the film festival was on in August I used to never have time to do anything else other than see films, as that’s what I wanted to do, but...

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Booking special assistance

1 September 2011

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disability access symbols with an added symbol with a question mark and exclamation mark

I am at the station on the way to Gatwick Airport. I still have a headache six days after a random assault. (I was rugby tackled to the ground from behind, kicked in the face / head and three times in the ribs before I ran.) I feel more fragile than normal, aside from everything else, and yet I was pondering over whether I'm entitled to special assistance when I get to the airport. I wonder if many people with 'hidden disabilities' have this feeling. It's a feeling of... well, having to explain...

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Images of Disability from the Royal College of Physicians

4 August 2011

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sepia illustration of a bewigged gentleman of short stature

Whilst on the way to see the new Shape exhibition, 'Re-framing disability: portraits from the Royal College of Physicians', I was watching the classic 1967 film ‘Guess who's coming to dinner’ on the train. I was struck by how much I knew about the film having only seen it once a few years ago. I went to the Re-Framing Disability exhibition and realised I knew nearly all the people that worked on it. But I wondered why not just have new images of disability, and people’s views...

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New Art at MK Gallery, Milton Keynes

3 August 2011

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photo of a car boot sale by Frazer Waller

I had a very positive meeting with Head of Learning, Emma Fry at MK Gallery in Milton Keynes. They're developing lots of new initiatives to support Artist film and video, including the creation of a permanent gallery for the work; and the programming of more workshops and expansion of the number of artists they work with. We also chatted briefly about the galleries relationship with the Turner Prize, as I was interested in this aspect of the arts and in particular how I might get to know more...

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Gary Thomas' Project The Dog & The Palace Film & Workshops wins Inspire Mark

21 June 2011

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A statue of the Dog on the steps of a palace, sitting on a cushion.

Gary Thomas' new project The Dog & The Palace Film and Workshops has been granted the Inspire Mark, the badge of the London 2012 Inspire Programme. The London 2012 Inspire programme recognises innovative and exceptional projects that are directly inspired by the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Dog & The Palace is about a young boy who is so inspired by watching the 2012 Olympic Games on TV that he decides to write to The Queen of England to say 'Thank You'. He sends...

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Full 'stream' ahead

11 June 2011

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Gary Thomas in the local paper

I've been thinking I need to do a new blog post for sometime now so here it is. I've had a very busy time preparing and then 'doing' upstream, which was a major experience for me and one that I've been more than happy to be a part of. There was so much work I wanted to do in preparation for it that (along with everything else) for two or three weeks beforehand I felt like I didn't even have time to piss (I'm writing that cos I actually thought that a few times in the run up to it!) So things...

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Gary Thomas takes his film script forward after some successful pitching...

12 April 2011

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The Script, marked up

My brain is all mushy right now and I don't think I could be any more tired unless I was actually giving birth. I'm not, so that's fine. Anyway, I'm this way because rather than JUST doing loads of prep for the film shoot on Wednesday & Thursday I also went to a comedy writing festival on Saturday and a producers talk on Sunday in London. I stayed overnight in a hotel in Finchley (of all places!) and I got to practice pitch my feature film script to two of the biggest names in indie film...

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Pulling it all together

3 April 2011

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Go Team Gary! I didn't write that, a friend put it at the end of an email and it does seem rather apt at the moment. You see, things are moving way faster than I could have imagined, and that's what needs to happen right now because time is indeed of the essence. How did this happen? I hear you cry. Even if you didn't I'll tell you anyway. I asked a friend I've known for a relatively short time (Christine Wilkinson) if she would write an application to ACE for R&D...

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PR Sweetie!

25 March 2011

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Photo of Gary Thomas wearing jeans and a light blue jumper

Everyone needs PR even if we're not sure what we're doing or how to do it. If you're an artist its crucial to get your success' out there and let people know about it. Here is a 'Press release' that I sent to a few people and am putting it here to tell even more people about my journey in the Arts. Gary Thomas has been selected for UPSTREAM, a major showcase of deaf & disabled artists in the South East. Work will be show as part of the Brighton Festival, 24th - 26th May 2011. A development...

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Embracing 'Interference'

14 March 2011

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stilll from Friends TV show

I've recently subscribed to Chris Brogan's blog posts email, which contains useful information and suggestions on what to write about. The recent email is all about confidence, and suggests writing a post on where I'm headed, so here it is. Er.... Who knows? Really, I mean I think about where I'm heading a lot, and as much as I like having plans, things conspire to interfere. Now, sometimes what happens when 'things' interfere with plans is WAY more interesting than the original plan. And...

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Gary Thomas asks AM I ready to move on?

28 February 2011

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Angelina Jolie winning Oscar in 2000

This may sound silly, but I've ummed a lot over the past month about how personal my blog posts should be, as potentially EVERYONE I know could read them (I'm tempted to say here 'they won't', but I'm not going too). The past month has been difficult because my step dad died on 23 January, and I've been wondering how and whether I should write about it. I've decided that I'm going to, as it all fits in with the whole notion of things being difficult, things going slowly, things not going right,...

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Gary Thomas on what we can learn from 'everyone else'

13 February 2011

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A cartoon image of a red carpet leading up stairs

I've been talking to a couple of people recently about ambitions. Okay, mainly my ambitions, but certainly ambitions. You see, I want to aim quite high, so at a recent arts meeting in London (more to be revealed eventually!) I stated in a sort of unsure voice in a room full of disabled artists - “I want to be mainstream”. And then, after a pause: “I want to be nominated for the Turner Prize.” Yep. That's what I said. And now I've written it down. Shit me. Silly isn't it?...

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IT GETS BETTER... EVENTUALLY

5 December 2010

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Still From Early One Summer, 2006

Originally written on 5th October 2010. I'm in a hotel in Buckingham as I write this and there is very little 3G signal. A couple of days ago I felt like shit. Truly awful, and I think I'm experiencing for the first time in my life (having had severe depression since I was 14) the 'black dog' that so many have spoken of. All entirely ironic, considering I am thinking about a piece of film for the 'It Gets Better Campaign.' I'm thinking about it having not seen many...

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Gary Thomas on frustration, risk & money.

20 August 2010

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image of a tree with money attached to it

I am an intellectual. No, I'm not just saying that to show off or anything, I did an online quiz at www.oprah.com and it told me so. It also said my need for helping others was my lowest score, (no surprise there) and creativity was up there in the highest marks (12 points) but my thirst for knowledge was paramount (14 points). I wonder if this is why I'm feeling frustrated at the moment, which I really am right now. I would like to use this frustration to take risks that would mean I can get...

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Some more notes from Gary Thomas on filming 'Moving In',

16 August 2010

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This post was written on Friday 23 July 2010 Fifth day of shooting Moving In and I am realising why film is not art. I'm also realising that it takes a whole load of people (and we don't have a whole load of people) to make things happen, and I also realise that I'm coping relatively well with the responsibility, as the crew we do have is very good. The actors are good too. Yesterday was a bit of a f*** up as we'd planned to do a load of scenes in the kitchen with all the actors, and for...

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Gary Thomas on his way to direct 'Moving In'

31 July 2010

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photo of three actors lying around in a bedroom

The first of these blog posts were written whilst filming 'Moving In', a couple of weeks ago on Sunday 18th July 2010. I am currently on the train to Portsmouth. Despite being disabled I have managed to bring two rucksacks and two suitcases with me. Hence, I may well be hideously stressed by the end of the journey. I'm going to Portsmouth to direct a half hour film that my friend has written, about four students who discover life, love etc... and I think it'll be good. Hopefully it will be...

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