Unlimited: The Symposium

4 white icons on a pink background. 1. An asterisk in a circle. 2. An equals sign in a circle. 3. An exclamation mark in a circle. 4. An arrow in a circle. Underneath these icons it reads 'What should disability-led arts look like in 2020?'

Unlimited: The Symposium was a disabled-led, two-day discussion event, held at the Unicorn Theatre on 4 and 5 September 2018. It was aimed at both a national and international audience across the cultural sector, with people attending in or engaging in the discussion and debate online..

The Symposium took place in the lead up to Southbank Centre’s Unlimited Festival 2018 – Wednesday 5 until Sunday 9 September 2018.


Why did we do it?

Unlimited has three aims – to commission high quality art by extraordinary disabled artists, to embed disabled artists in the cultural sector and ultimately to transform the perception of disability.

We can’t do this alone. Artists, organisations, producers, programmers, curators, critics, funders and others across all art forms need to be a part of the conversation around disability arts and to discuss the issues, solutions and possibilities with disabled people themselves.


What did we discuss?

The topics we discussed were chosen by our audiences. Each topic in the Symposium’s four main sessions – Art, Equality, Attitude and Future – was voted for on Twitter:

  • Art: How can disabled artists change the ‘mainstream’ arts sector?
  • Equality: Disability, intersectional identities and the arts
  • Attitude: Why is it taking so long? Can we speed up change? Will we ever get there?
  • Future: Does new technology enable or create more barriers?

Each session began with provocations from a diverse range of speakers, followed by discussion and debate in chaired breakout spaces and animated by artists-in-residence and other creative responses around the building.


Who was it for?

The Symposium was aimed at those in the cultural sector who want to engage with different perspectives and to plan for real change. Global audiences watched the live-stream online and joined the discussion on social media.


Get involved

Watch the recorded sessions and read the discussion round-ups:

Watch the recorded ART session

Watch the recorded EQUALITY session

Watch the recorded ATTITUDE session

Watch the recorded FUTURE session

Sign up to our newsletter and add your voice to the debate with @weareunltd  #UnltdSymposium on Twitter.

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