Wherever possible we try to get out and meet disabled people and those organisations involved with them to keep abreast of current thinking – and to have a bit of fun.
It was an honour to be invited to the University of Leicester to the launch of a new Exhibition at the recently expanded Attenborough Arts Centre. The exhibition, ‘Art, Life Activism’ brings together a diverse range of artists who produce works shaped by the politics of disability, sometimes drawing on their own experiences as disabled people in their own right.
Chair of the Arts Council England, Sir Peter Bazalgette and Michael Attenborough CBE and son of the late Lord Attenborough, after whom the centre is named, attended the exhibition which runs until 17 January 2016. Artist, Tony Heaton said that the exhibition “raises questions about the relationship between art and politics and invites us to consider the complex social, economic and cultural forces characterising disability…” Indeed, whilst some of the displays present a humorous accent others are certainly not for the fainthearted.
One of the events I’m most looking forward to in 2016 is the ‘Three Parks Challenge’ that will invite disabled people to make their way around the perimeter of three of London’s best green spaces. Better still, the organisers hope that participants will raise lots of money for charity and also highlight the issues regarding accessibility in the Capital and beyond. The gala launch dinner was a great success and saw five time Paralympic Champion, Sophie Christiansen and disabled trans-Atlantic rower Rory Mackenzie speak movingly about their own experiences.
Insane Logic, a company dedicated to providing solutions to children with communication difficulties, ran a fascinating morning to discuss the role technology can play in levelling the field in SEN. Of course, the question is one that needs to be applied on a case-by-case basis but there certainly were some genuinely innovative concepts to look at.
I’m always interested in hearing about your event, so drop me a line or invite me along and I might just see you there.
Tom – firstname.lastname@example.org