About you: What kind of information should the ‘Professional development’ section contain?

Unlimited is about ambition and innovation and stretching artists’ practices. Please tell us how this project stretches your practice, whether that be in relation to skills, networks, audiences, form, new collaborations…

Consider what support you might need with regards to this and ensure you have budgeted for it. Support could include mentoring, training, shadowing, gaining new skills and so forth.

What information should the ‘Evaluation’ section contain and how should I measure the success of my project?

In this section you should outline some of the outcomes you plan to achieve and how you will monitor your project’s progress. This might include gathering feedback as well as internal reflections on the impact of the project for the Creative Team.

Project details: What kind of information should the ‘Unlimited’ section contain?

Please tell us why your project is right for Unlimited. We are looking for projects that are disabled-led, demonstrate quality, ambition and innovation, and, in their final form, are suitable for extensive touring and dissemination.

Project details: What kind of information should my Project Proposal contain?

In this section, we want to hear about the art work or project, what are its aims, form, content, and what is it about? We want to have a clear understanding of your idea and how it addresses our Key Criteria.

If you have already undergone initial research and development for this project, what has been the response to the work?

Project details: What kind of information should my Project Summary text contain?

This section of the application is about giving us a clear and concise summary of the project, naming the artist(s) involved, the themes, forms and aims of the project. This should be no more than 200 words. Should the application be successful, this text will be used on the Unlimited website and within our initial marketing materials (full or edited). It should be clear and to the point.

What supporting documents should I include in my application?

Writing about an artistic idea can sometimes be limiting so this is an opportunity for you to give us an insight into your project by using visuals, sound, or creative writing. The content could relate directly to the project (such as documentation of research, or visualisation of ideas or mood boards), but can also be previous work that demonstrates quality. It’s important to select this material carefully so that it informs the application and stays relevant. Please take the time to enter descriptions of visuals and sounds for hearing and visually impaired panel members to enable them to be able to access the content.

Some questions were already answered as part of the Expression of Interest form, why is Unlimited asking the question again?

It may be that some aspects of your projects have changed since you submitted an Expression of Interest as your project becomes more solid, so this is an opportunity to adapt your answers. The panel will base their decision-making on the information supplied in the Full Application Form, and not the Expression of Interest Form, so it’s important that all the elements you want them to consider are present in this new submission. You can simply repeat answers exactly as you submitted them for Expression of Interest, if appropriate.

Who is my Key Contact?

Your Key Contact is a member of the Unlimited team. They will be named in the email sent to you that invites you to submit a Full Application. We advise you get in touch with your Key Contact as soon as possible.

Will I be penalised for submitting just one instance of past work/document?

No, the work will be judged on quality and relevance, not the number of supporting documents submitted. It is advisable to submit your best work(s).

I don’t have any documentation of my work – can I still apply?

No. You need to be able to show examples of your work to the selection panel using either still images, audio, video documentation and/or written documents.

How do I submit an application?

Artsadmin has an online portal for all the applications. To start completing your application, go to If this is inaccessible to you then you can apply in alternative ways.

Please contact your Key Contact to find out more or if you have any other access related questions in relation to applying.

When can I apply?

The application portal for Full Applications will open on Monday 3 December 2018, and deadline for submissions is Monday 11 February 2019 at 12 noon. We won’t be able to offer any extensions.

Is there any support available to help with submitting an application?

Yes. If you need any assistance with access, or the language and terminology in our application form, please get in touch with your Key Contact.

Why is there a two-stage application process?

Unlimited asks applicants to submit an Expression of Interest, and then invites shortlisted applicants only to fill out a more detailed application form.

This two-stage process saves time for artists, producers and selection panel members by only asking shortlisted applicants to develop a detailed project plan and budget. Shortlisted applicants will also have direct contact with a named Unlimited Team member to support their application.

If you submitted an Expression of Interest and have not been shortlisted, unfortunately you are not eligible to submit a Full Application.

How competitive are these opportunities?

Unlimited expects to receive a large number of high-quality applications, and we will not be able to fund all of the good applications we receive. In 2016, for example, we received many Expressions of Interest applications – 51 were for the Main Commissions and 48 were for the Main Research & Development. We shortlisted 14-15 and awarded support to 6-7 projects in each strand.

Do I need to be registered disabled to apply?

No. There is no longer a register of disabled people.

We base our work on the Social Model of Disability. If you self-define or view yourself as a disabled person, then you are eligible to apply. You do not need to disclose details of your disability or supply any medical evidence. For a definition of the Social Model of Disability visit the Shape website:

My artistic practice is not related to disability. Can I still apply?

Yes. Applications are welcome from artists who work within a disability arts context, and from those disabled artists whose practice is unrelated to the experience of being disabled. Unlimited is about art, not about disability; some work may reference disability, some may not.

Can individuals / organisations apply?

  • Individual artists:

Individual artists are encouraged to apply. Please think about how the reporting, finances, administration and production of your project will be supported. We expect that individual artists apply with an individual producer or producing organisation already in place from the point of submission.

  • Organisations and companies:

The aim of the Unlimited commissions is to support work by disabled artists, not work for disabled people. Organisations and companies are welcome to apply and must clearly demonstrate how the creative elements are led by disabled people.

What artforms are eligible?

We welcome application proposals from all artforms, this includes visual arts, music, performing arts and literature. Film is only suitable if it is video for a gallery or art context, as opposed to cinema. If your work is related to cinema, you may want to check Arts Council England’s recommendations for film funding:

What do you mean by ‘disability led’?

At Unlimited we take a flexible view on the term ‘disability led’ – we expect applicants to clearly demonstrate how the creative elements of the project they are applying for are led by disabled people. The key is in your articulation – you need to explain how ‘disability-led’ applies to your situation.

Will I be eligible for Access to Work* funding and support during the programme?

It is the selected applicant’s responsibility to apply for Access to Work funding, if the support is necessary and relevant to their situation. It is anticipated that for most artists, costs for support workers and/or access equipment/technology will be funded via Access to Work.

*Access to Work is a government scheme that is designed to meet the additional costs of employing a disabled person where they are directly a result of that person’s impairments. For more information go to:

Will my access costs be covered?

Any access costs you incur as an artist or practitioner should be covered by Access to Work if you have self-employed artist status or work as part of an organisation or company. You should include these costs in your budget, both as expenditure and expected income. If you do not draw an income from your work, we will work with you to meet your access costs if you are selected, please still include these figures within your project budget.




Can I submit a portfolio, reviews, publications or slides?

No. Please only submit the support material as outlined in the application form. You may consult the Word versions of each application form by downloading it from here:

These forms show what can be submitted with your application.

Will audience members’ access costs be covered?

It is the responsibility of the applicant to consider how their work will be accessible for audiences and participants within the aesthetic of their artistic idea. Applicants are expected to consider access throughout the creative process and embed it in their full application proposal. These costs should be covered within your project budget. Please talk to your key contact about this if you want to know more.

Can I apply with one or more collaborators?

Yes, but the proposed work must be led by disabled artist(s).

Why do I need a Producer?

Unlimited is looking for artists to apply with projects that are ambitious for them – either covering new ground or enabling them to work at a different scale. Even if the scale of your work is small, we expect there will be some logistical and administrative work required, and project management in bringing the work to an audience. We want to know how you will engage with a producer to manage these aspects of the project, or for you to evidence how you will manage both the management and artistic sides of the project. You can also tell us in your application how you will use the R&D period to identify a producer for the project if you do not already have one in place.

Read more about what a producer might mean for your project, through these blogs: What’s all this producers’ talk about?, What do we mean by producer?, This thing called producing, and Working with a Producer.

Why are different awards only open to artists and companies based in specific countries?

Each award is supported by different funders therefore the funds can only be used to benefit of artists of those countries.

When and how will the decisions be made?

The selection panel in March 2019 includes representatives from key partners and at least 5 independent members.

The panel will be disability-led. You can find more information on the Selection Panel on our website:
Unlimited staff support the application process but do not vote in the final selection process.

The panels for all the commissions and awards will meet in March 2019 and awards will be announced at the end of March 2019.

Expression of Interest Forms: what kind of information should the ‘Project Description’ contain?

This is the section of the form where you tell us about the project you would like Unlimited to support. Tell us about your idea, and what context you aim to deliver it in. Remember that Unlimited works across all art forms at all scales, so be clear as to what type of work you want to create and what setting the ‘final product’ will be suitable for. This short section should give the selection panel a clear sense of what you are looking to do or create, without going into too much detail. If your

application is shortlisted, you will be invited to provide much more detail about your project and how you will deliver it.

Is there any advice on fees for collaborators and artists?

We recommend checking industry-specific websites for rates: a-n The Artists Information Company, Artists’ Union England, Equity, Independent Theatre Council, Musicians’ Union, UK Theatre and Writers’ Guild.

Will the artwork be for sale, and will Unlimited take a commission?

Artwork does not have to be up for sale, and we will work with individuals on a case by case basis to determine any commission fees. These will be determined by negotiation between the Unlimited partners and the selected commissioned artists. Any print material you produce as part of your work (i.e. catalogues) would be for you to sell and gain income – Unlimited would not expect commission (presenting venues/partners may have different conditions).

Where can I find a Producer?

We recommend you contact people you already know and tap into your networks to see if anyone familiar with your practice might be interested in supporting your project. Alternatively, we will have contacts of some producers happy to be contacted about potential Unlimited projects (please email for this information), or you could advertise through a platform such as the Artsadmin e-digest:

Can Unlimited give me advice about writing a good application?

We aim to support all shortlisted projects to make the strongest applications they can. As part of this process we invite you to have up to one hour’s support from a member of the Unlimited team, this will be your Key Contact. They will draw upon the knowledge and experience of the whole Unlimited team at both Shape and Artsadmin. This time may be used to clarify criteria, advise you on access or help you think through any element of the project where that might be helpful. This support can be in person/over Skype, on the phone or by email – whatever is most useful.

Want to be an Unlimited Ally?

We want meaningful relationships with venues and organisations UK-wide, which are personal and tailored to what we can both offer each other.