Monday, February 20, 2017

Access For Artists With Disabilities

Finding Accessible Pathways
Mentorships are one to one teaching sessions
allowing individuals to develop their art practise.

The struggles to move through from an emerging artist to engaging as a professional artists are tendentious. Rarely is an artist able to live off the sales of artwork alone. For artists living with disabilities or mental illness there are additional challenges to overcome. The definition of disability we use is: any impairment that alters an individual ability to function in the normal manner.  We use a social model of disability allow us to assist people who are unable to read and write, to sell their artwork.

Access Issues include:

·         Physical Access – access to buildings, restrooms, lighting, physical layout of the building itself, and access to public transport.

·         Access to information and technology – many people with disabilities are unable to access technology independently.

·         Communication Access – is difficult for those with hearing and speech impairments and those with visual impairments.

·         Access to education – Intellectual impairments do not affect the creative process their access barriers to formal art studies and community art classes.  Traditional classroom settings are also problematic form those with behavioural disabilities, mental illness and sensory disabilities such as autisms.

·         Access on financial grounds – those living on limited incomes are less likely to be able to afford community classes or private tuition.

Community Attitudes

Community attitudes have not keep up with social reform or the law.  All business are now encouraged to have a disability action plan, to meet the needs of their employees and customers.  Many people in the community categories people with disabilities into two groups. Those with physical disabilities or those with intellectual disabilities; including the majority of those with physical disabilities.

People with disabilities are still seen as bystanders watching on, rather than active participants in the community.  While these attitudes dominate social attitudes access issues with continued to be hard fought for.  The recognition of the social barriers faced by those with mental illness, behavioural disabilities and sensory disabilities are often dismissed as people who do not act appropriately.  The is not social recognition that people cannot achieve social acceptable behaviour due to disability of mental illness.

This is why disability awareness training is imperative to address access issues for artists living with disability and mental illness.

You can help us to address access issues in the Ipswich Community through purchasing a raffle ticket.  Only 1 prize a artist supply pack with carry bag worth over $100.  Tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5 and are available for purchase at the Ipswich Mall's Twilight Markets on the 1st Friday and 3rd Friday each month.  The raffle will be drawn on Friday 7th April at 7 pm at the Twilight  Markets in the Mall.
If you like more in formation on access issues or how you can meet the access needs of those living with disabilities please email us.

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