Cultivating spaces for extraordinary artists

Another Awkward Bastard Blog by Mike

‘If you don’t belong anywhere you belong everywhere’ Ashok Mistry

This statement by Ashok epitomises DASH’s work, which is naïve optimism that we can be a part of the change, the solution, that we can live in an equal inclusive and just Society, which is fully accessible.

What needs to change is the ideology (disabilism) that underpins this inequality. A Society that excludes any group of people is a flawed Society, which will impact on all members of this Society.

The social model of Disability drives DASH’s work, though we know that any model has its limitations.

So how can a small organisation like DASH make a big impact? We can only do this through working with others, there is no point DASH standing outside shouting, we need to be inside explaining and working together through practical action.

I have been really impressed how many arts organisations want to work with us to change their organisations and the artists that they work with, but I know there are so many others who fear change and hold negative attitudes towards Disabled artists.

I know the future belongs to the organisations and the people who have flexible minds who embrace change and I look forward to seeing this change.

written by Mike Layward Artistic director DASH May 2019 for the University of Birmingham publication, MAP.