31 Disabled artists to disrupt 30 museums and galleries across the UK with surreal interventions - FAD Magazine

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31 Disabled artists to disrupt 30 museums and galleries across the UK with surreal interventions

Aaron Williamson Invisible Man Courtesy the artist

On 2nd July 2022, 31 Disabled artists will disrupt 30 museums and galleries across the UK with surreal interventions in recognition of the 102nd anniversary of the first Dada International Exhibition. It will be the most ambitious showcase of work by d/Deaf, Disabled and Neurodivergent artists to be presented in the UK.

The event with the title We are Invisible We are Visible (WAIWAV) is presented by DASH, the disabled-led visual arts organisation, and was awarded the 2021 Ampersand Prize. The project asks the question – What if the Dada movement had started in 2020 in lockdown? What would they have done? Is now a timely moment to resurrect the spirit and essence of Dada? 

Interventions include a series of short nonsensical happenings and protests by artists brandishing placards and adorned in wearable artworks conveying seemingly arbitrary, confusing, and possibly contradictory messages; a short dance theatre piece inspired by ‘Parade’ a proto-Dadaist ballet created by Erik Satie, Picasso and Cocteau; audiences being given 3D Spex (spectacles with red and blue lenses) to spot the artist camouflaged in a ‘dazzle’ design; and a performance involving chewing gum and a set of broken wind-up teeth, exploring ideas around neurodivergent communication and behaviour, as well as referencing the Dadaist tradition of creating artworks that exist with and without meanings.

The museums and galleries taking part include: Arnolfini, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Centre for Contemporary Art Derry, Firstsite, Focal Point Gallery, Golden Thread Gallery, Grizedale Arts,  Glynn Vivian Art Gallery,  Harris Museum and Art Gallery, HOME, The Hepworth Wakefield, IKON, John Hansard Gallery, Leeds Art Gallery, Liverpool Biennial, Manchester Art Gallery, MIMA, MK Gallery, Modern Art Oxford, Newlyn Art Gallery, Nottingham Contemporary, The Pier Arts Centre, Site Gallery, Tate Britain, Tate Liverpool, Tate Modern, Tate St Ives, Towner Art Gallery, Turner Contemporary and VOID.

The Artists: Stav Meishar; AIM (Art In Motion); Tony Heaton /Terry Smith; Bel Pye; Kristina Veasey; Chris Tally Evans; Porcelain Delaney; Nicola Woodham; Grace Currie; Alice Quarterman; Dora Colquhoun;  April Lin ??; Lisette Auton;  Caroline Cardus; Jenette Coldrick;  Ashokkumar Mistry;  Cheryl Beer;  Sonia Boué; Christina Lovey;  Alex Billingham; Luke ‘Luca’ Cockayne; Andrea Mindel; gobscure; Jo Munton/Stephanie Finegan; Mianam Bashir/Emma Powell; Aaron Williamson; Sam Metz;  Hayley Hindle; Anahita Harding;  Chisato Minamimura;  Alistair Gentry.

Mike Layward, DASH’s Artistic Director said:

“To be awarded the Ampersand award for this surreal intervention will not only have a massive impact on Disability arts but will show that the visual arts institutions are now open and willing to change. DASH has a long history of producing provocative interventions that continue the legacy of Dada, Absurdism and Surrealism into the 21st century.”

The WAIWAV selection panel: Lois Keidan: ex-Live Art Development agency director; Ryan Hughes: Director of Coventry Biennial; Linzi Stauvers: Head of Learning at IKON; Ashokkumar Mistry: Disabled Curator/artist; Aidan Moesby: Disabled curator/artist; Heather Sturdy: Head of National Partnerships at Tate; Ceri Barrow: Plus Tate Coordinator and Mike Layward: DASH Artistic Director. 

Find out about the artists here: @dashdisabilityarts


DASH is a Disabled led visual arts charity. It creates opportunities for Disabled artists to develop their creative practice. These opportunities take many forms, from high-quality commissions to community-based workshops, the work it creates is centred around its vision and mission.

With a history of work including visual arts, dance, theatre, live arts and festivals in Shropshire since the mid 1990’s, DASH became a limited company and registered charity in 2001 and in 2004 secured revenue funding from Arts Council England.  In 2009 DASH took the decision to specialise its work in visual arts, while expanding its geographical boundaries.

During the last ten years DASH has undertaken truly ground-breaking work – projects that have challenged perceptions, fostered and mentored new Deaf and Disabled artists, encouraged professional development and helped to engineer change in the sector.



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