Two Caucasian women, one of whom is a wheelchair user, are within a white archway. Its inside is lined with row upon row of white cones, which appear to be paper, and are lit to appear as though they are glowing.
Anna Berry's 'Breathing Room' installation, Photo by Rachel Cherry

Unlimited Connects events in Salford, Stoke-on-Trent, Colchester, Salisbury and Cardiff  

Back in July, we announced a series of events that we are holding with partners across England and Wales to bring together artists, arts organisations, promoters, festivals and venues to talk about disability-led arts and access, listen to panel discussions, hear from Unlimited Commissions artists, meet new contacts and see work by disabled artists. 

Each event is free but booking is essential so read more about the themes of each event and follow the links below to reserve your place.  

We look forward to seeing you at one of the Unlimited Connects and you can also follow the conversation on Twitter via #UnltdConnects 

Unlimited Connects North – SICK! Festival, The Lowry, Salford

19 September 2019, 10.30am-4pm, followed by performances

This event centres around questions of identity, the body, health and disability as tackled by disabled artists, and across artforms, aligned with SICK! Festival’s themes. 

  • Panel discussion: How do we choose which words to use?
    Not all disabled artists use the same terms, and not all those labelled ‘disabled’ by others self-identify that way. How different are the practices described as ‘arts and disability’, ’disability arts’ and ‘inclusive arts’? What role does self-definition play? 
  • Pitch & Mix artists: Cheryl Martin, Jane Gauntlett, Matilda Ibini, Nwando Ebizie, Oozing Gloop, Sonny Nwachukwu, Triple C / DANC .
  • Showcased artwork: interactive installation by Felix Peckitt, evening performances by Candoco and Laurence Clark. 

Book your place at The Lowry now 

Unlimited Connects MidlandsFRONTLINEdance Festival, Stoke-on-Trent 

All day, 3 October 2019 

This event and the festival it sits within hope to trigger a dynamic conversation on what is being done locally and regionally to support disabled artists and showcase their work, across artforms.  

  • Panel discussion: How do we go beyond tokenism, box-ticking and lip service, when it comes to supporting disabled artists? How can we create real equal opportunity in every creative space and avoid ‘all speech and no action’ approaches? 
  • Pitch & Mix artists: to be announced. 
  • Showcased artwork: interactive installation by Raquel Meseguer, evening performance double bill by Nye Russell-Thompson and Aby Watson. 

Book your place at FRONTLINEdance now 

Unlimited Connects South East – Firstsite, Colchester

10 October 2019, 11am-6pm 

The focus of this event will be the visual arts and cross art forms, as we partner with one of the major visual arts organisations of the South East. 

  • Panel discussion: How can disabled artists be critiqued equally? Is the art of disabled artists still placed in a ‘ghetto’ and ignored? Do critics focus on disability rather than art? Is there enough academic rigour around the work of disabled artists? 
  • Pitch & Mix artists: Justin Edgar, Kristina Veasey, Shawanda Corbett, Sop, Suzie Larke, Tarik Elmoutawakil.
  • Showcased artwork: Anna Berry’s Breathing Room prototype will be installed in the foyer, and a selection of video work will be on show. 

Book your place at Firstsite now 

Unlimited Connects South West – Salisbury Arts Centre, Wiltshire Creative, Salisbury

18 October 2019, 10.30am-5pm, followed by a performance

Using the unique context of Wiltshire Creative’s not so distant merger, this event will focus on what cultural organisations might do to support each other in change, and feature performance and visual artists.  

  • Panel discussion: Does size matter? How can small and large organisations learn from each other? Are small arts and cultural organisations more open to actively making access happen rapidly for disabled artists than larger institutions? Do larger organisations lack flexibility or willingness? How can we learn to scale up change more quickly? 
  • Pitch & Mix artists: Bim Ajadi, Dave Young (The Shouting Mute), Hannah Treadway, Jamie Beddard, Viv Gordon. 
  • Showcased artwork: evening performance by Byron Vincent. 

Book your place at Salisbury Arts Centre now 

Unlimited Connects Wales, DI-BEN-DRAW – Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff

Two full days on 14 & 15 November 2019 – registration to open in August

This two-day event will ask how venues and organisations might work those that operate outside existing networks, with a particular focus on the Welsh context. 

  • Panel discussion: Can venues be all things to all people? How do you balance providing a lot of support to a few, against a little support to a large number? 
  • Pitch & Mix artists: to be announced. 
  • Showcased artwork: to be announced. 

We are hosting six Unlimited Connects events throughout Wales from January – March 2020, and these event details will be announced this autumn. Sign up to our newsletter and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for updates.  

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