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Welcome to our March 2015 newsletter.

Firstly, we want to welcome Mark Walton OAM to the Accessible Arts Board. Mark is a highly respected figure in the Australian and New Zealand musical scene and widely acknowledged as a virtuoso clarinet and saxophone performer, inspiring teacher, composer and advocate for community music making.

Arts Development Manager Kris Tito has just returned from Glasgow, Scotland, where she represented Accessible Arts at the International Summit for Learning Disability Artists and their Support Studios. The summit brought together professionals in this area to share and discuss visual arts practice in the supported studio context. Kris writes about her experience of the summit for the Accessible Arts Sector News.

This month our Strategic Projects Manager, Gemma Collocott, presented at the Arts and Disability Programming Forum, held at Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery. Read Gemma's overview on the forum and how Accessible Arts is responding to the NDIS for the sector in NSW, on our website.

In case you missed it, we encourage you to read Amanda Tink's recent article written for Arts Hub on Access initiativies in Australia. Amanda gives an insight into the real story of access tours for vision impaired people.

Grants Banner
Accessible Arts 2015 - 2016 Grants Program Now Open

Accessible Arts Grants Program consists of Quick Response Grants up to $5,000 and Small Grants from $5,000 – $20,000, over two-grant rounds in 2015 and 2016. 

Grants are for projects that improve access for people with brain and/or spinal cord injuries and people with disability more generally.

The funding program will support arts and cultural projects at any stage of their creative development and/or public presentation. They can include projects that support online resources, venue accessibility, adaptation of equipment for specific use in creative expression and other initiatives supporting the creation of artwork. 

Visit the Accessible Arts website to find out how to apply.

Murmuration Logo with Matt Shilcock dancing
Murmuration | Sydney's First Dance Theatre Company

Murmuration Dance Theatre is Sydney’s first professional integrated dance company, working alongside artists with and without disability to create new contemporary dance theatre works.

A resident of the Addison Road Community Centre in Marrickville, Murmuration's vision is to develop a hub of integrated creative activity. The driving force behind Murmuration Dance Theatre is Artistic Director Sarah-Vyne Vassallo, in collaboration with Artistic Associate, Dan Daw and Projects Manager, Ana Welsh.

To celebrate, the Murmur Team would like to invite you to their Community Launch on Tuesday 14 April at Addison Road Community Centre, from 6.30pm - 8.30pm, for a no frills celebration.

This will be a chance to meet the team and hear all about the 2015 program. Be sure to check out the website for full program details or email or

Projecting Normal Book Cover Image - head silhouette with buildings in background
PROJECTING NoRMAL | Artists with Disability Book Launched

The PROJECTING NoRMAL project has just released a book that is now available to buy in either hard or soft copy from online self-publishing platform, Blurb.

Sydney-based Nick Baldas and writer Gaele Sobott have collaborated to produce this publication, which is a collection of writers with disability sharing and exploring personal identity and experiences through text and images. 

The project is a growing body of artists, creating a culture of support and resistance. This culture is not just about artists with disability advocating for change, but one that involves others who see the need for more complex intellectual and artistic representations of our society.

PROJECTING NoRMAL is about working towards exceptional art, transgressing social barriers, developing the ability to think critically, plus having fun and loving what we do.

Purchase your copy today at Blurb, and 'Like' the Facebook Page to stay up to date or get involved.

Access News
Access Logo

Disability Awareness Training - 22 April 2015

Disability awareness training is vital for people working across all levels of arts policy or practice within organisations. 

It provides a real understanding of disability and inclusive practices, with information and skills development relevant to all.

Our training is delivered by an experienced trainer with lived experience.

To book contact Matthew Pethybridge, +61 2 9251 6499 ext 108,

Visit our website for more information.

Metro Screen Screenability Logo

Metro Screen is calling out to innovative screen content creators who think they can produce extraordinary short films, that challenge the attitudes and common misconceptions around Disability.

You might film a powerful spoken word, punchy performance piece, hidden camera story or document a sporting event. The possibilities are endless. High concept ideas that embrace the short duration form and inspire sharing on social media are encouraged – so get creative.

Four writer/director/producer teams will receive funding to produce 2-3 minute films on the topic of Disability. 

Applications close 27 March 2015. Visit Metro Screen website for full details.

Featured Artist
Digby Webster painting - blue face acrylic

As part of LOST (Leichhardt Open Studio Trail) Leichhardt Library is hosting the exhibition of renowned local artist Digby Webster. 

Digby Webster was born in Sydney in 1987. He has Down Syndrome. Digby approaches art with huge enthusiasm and participates in it daily. He works in the mediums of oil pastels, acrylics, felt pens and inks. Digby enjoys strong evocative colours and uses them playfully. He has an expressive visual language of his own. 

"I love to make art. It is my passion, my blood. Every time I draw I feel inspired." 

Exhibition closes Tuesday 31 March 2015.

Exhibition times found online at the Library opening hours. 

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Gig Buddies

Gig Buddies is a project that pairs up people with and without learning disabilities to be friends and to go to events together. New volunteers are regularly recruited from all over Sydney to buddy up with a person who has a learning disability.

If you have a learning disability and would like to go to more events, join Gig Buddies today!

Featured | Arts + Disability Videos
Image of Deaf Arts Officer Joanna Agius
Newsletter features in Auslan
Arts Access Australia Organisation video
Arts Access Australia
Norwegian punk band interview
Eurovision goes punk!

Arts events, opportunities or news that are accessible to people with disability, their families, friends and carers will be published on our website and/or promoted in our social media and newsletter.

Listings should include the title, date, location, short description (100 words), plus all available contact details, access details and an image (jpeg format 500 KB max).

Email your news to

Accessible Arts is assisted by the NSW Government through Arts NSW and Family and Community Services.

NSW government logo in black and white waratah