News

News

ARTS ACTIVATED 2019 CONFERENCE PUTS ARTS AND DISABILITY CENTRE STAGE

200 DELEGATES & 70 SPEAKERS TO MAKE IT HAPPEN TODAY

Sydney, 15 August 2019: Making arts, culture and events more accessible for the 20% of Australians who live with disability or who are Deaf is the focus of the Arts Activated 2019 Conference which will take place at Sydney Olympic Park next week.

Produced by Accessible Arts – NSW’s peak arts and disability organisation – the conference will take place at the Waterview centre in Bicentennial Park from 22 – 23 August 2019 and will attract up to 200 artists, arts workers, disability advocates, researchers, policymakers and other experts from across the arts, cultural and disability sectors. Find out more at: www.artsactivated2019.com

70 speakers and presenters from across Australia and overseas will take part in more than 20 sessions and events covering a diverse range of topics designed to accelerate action that will increase cultural opportunities for both artists and audiences with disability.

Leading UK artist and disability arts advocate Rachel Gadsden and The Smithsonian Institution’s Director of Accessibility Programs Beth Ziebarth will be the keynote speakers over the two days of the biennial conference which also features a cultural program of film screenings, music performances and an onsite art project.  

Some of the topics to be considered include: authentic casting and representation; increasing participation in arts, culture and events by making programming and venues more accessible; boosting mainstream training opportunities for artists and arts workers with disability; reshaping the disability arts narrative; technology and design trends for universal access; and improving mainstream engagement with the work of artists with disability.

The conference is being supported by the NSW Government – via Create NSW and Destination NSW – as well as a range of local government, corporate, community and media partners.

Accessible Arts Chairperson Sharman Pretty: “People with disability make an enormous contribution to arts and culture in Australia as artists, arts workers and audience. However, this is not yet appropriately reflected in the provision of opportunity and equity, and it’s time for this to change. The theme of this year’s conference is ‘Making It Happen Today’ with the focus on fast tracking enhanced opportunities for professional and aspiring artists as well as greater accessibility across the arts, cultural and event sectors.”

Accessible Arts CEO Kerry Comerford: “The conference provides a really valuable opportunity for artists with disability to share their knowledge and experience as well as connect with other artists and arts workers from NSW, across Australia and overseas. It’s also a unique platform for people working in the arts, cultural and event sectors to share their approaches to accessibility and better understand how to increase participation in their programs, performances, exhibitions and events. We’re excited to be offering a diverse, engaging and entertaining program that will help participants develop careers, audiences and creative practice.”        

To register or find out more, go to: www.artsactivated2019.com

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  • Facebook Post: Arts Activated 2019 Conference (Sydney 22-23 Aug) is putting arts and disability centre stage. There’ll be 200 delegates, 70 local and international speakers, 20 sessions and events, and a great cultural program. Starts Thu 22 Aug at Sydney Olympic Park. Be part of making arts and culture more accessible for people with disability. www.artsactivated2019.com #artsactivated2019 #accessiblearts #disabilityarts #arts #inclusion

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To obtain a media pass or interview our keynote speakers, please contact:

Michael Badorrek | Marketing Manager | +61 0431 594 007 | marketing@aarts.net.au

SMITHSONIAN ACCESSIBILITY DIRECTOR ANNOUNCED AS 2ND KEYNOTE SPEAKER FOR ARTS ACTIVATED 2019 CONFERENCE

Smithsonian Institution’s Director of Accessibility Programs Beth Ziebarth

Sydney, 27 July 2019: One of the world’s leading accessibility experts – The Smithsonian Institution’s Director of Accessibility Programs Beth Ziebarth – has been confirmed as the second international keynote speaker at the upcoming Arts Activated 2019 Conference, Australia’s leading disability arts forum.

The Smithsonian is one of the world’s foremost museum complexes and for over 30 years Ms Ziebarth has been working to shape the institution’s approach to making its programs, services and infrastructure more accessible for both visitors and staff with disability.

Ms Ziebarth will be the keynote speaker on the second day of the conference which aims to help fast track the process of making arts, culture and events more accessible for the 20% of Australians who live with a disability or who are Deaf. 

Produced by Accessible Arts – NSW’s peak arts and disability organisation – the conference will take place at Sydney’s Waterview centre at Sydney Olympic Park from 22 – 23 August 2019 and will attract up to 200 artists, arts workers, disability advocates, researchers, policymakers and other experts from across the arts, cultural and disability sectors. Find out more at: www.artsactivated2019.com

In her role at the Smithsonian, Ms Ziebarth develops and implements accessibility policy and guidelines for the Institution’s 19 museums, the National Zoo, and nine research centres, ensuring that the Smithsonian’s 30 million annual visitors experience a welcoming environment that accommodates individuals of all ages and abilities.

Ms Ziebarth’s conference session – Place Settings: Making Cultural Venues Work For Everyone – will focus on how the Smithsonian has developed its approach to accessibility over recent years. She will be joined by artist and Access Smithsonian Project & Community Outreach Coordinator Robin Lynne Marquis who has over 15 years of experience in smaller community focussed organisations in Washington D.C. and Baltimore. They will discuss how the policies and practice of large institutions can be distilled into achievable access outcomes for smaller organisations.   

Ms Ziebarth: “Simply put, the visitor who needs accessible services is not the occasional guest at a museum. Every day we will welcome people to our museums who depend upon the Smithsonian to make its facilities, exhibitions, and programs accessible to all. We want to be able to serve people throughout their life spans so that they, like everyone else, have the opportunity to be lifelong learners.”

Ms Ziebarth will join leading UK artist and disability arts advocate Rachel Gadsden as the international keynote speakers at the conference, and they’ll appear alongside over 35 Australian artists, arts workers, policymakers, culture experts and technology gurus who will be speaking and presenting at the conference.

Some of the local artists who’ll be involved include: designer Duncan Meerding; filmmaker and theatremaker Emily Dash; writer Gayle Kennedy; and actor, musician, and writer Glenn McKenzie.

Advocates and policymakers who’ll be speaking include: UNSW Disability Innovation Institute Director and member of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Rosemary Kayess; NSW Department of Planning, Industry & Environment Director of Inclusive Infrastructure and Experience Paul Nunnari; and Sydney Inner West Council Access and Inclusion Planning Leader Glenn Redmayne.

Arts and culture experts who’ll be involved include Google’s Creative Lab Team Lead Kristin Sillitoe; Director of Major Performing Arts Projects at the Australia Council for the Arts Morwenna Collett; and Director of Community, Emerging and Experimental Arts at the Australia Council for the Arts Jeremy Smith. 

Disability arts experts who’ll be speaking include Arts Access Australia CEO Megan Shand; new General Manager of Bus Stop Films Tracey Corbin-Matchett; new Executive Director of Arts Access Victoria Caroline Bowditch; and DADAA Strategic Projects Manager Jacqueline Homer.

Organisers have now also confirmed the final program for the conference which will include 22 sessions and events will include a range of thought-provoking plenaries, panel discussions, workshops and networking functions.

Some of the topics to be considered include: authentic casting and representation; increasing participation in arts, culture and events by making programming and venues more accessible; boosting mainstream training opportunities for artists and arts workers with disability; reshaping the disability arts narrative; technology and design trends for universal access; and improving mainstream engagement with the work of artists with disability.

The conference is being supported by the NSW Government – via Create NSW and Destination NSW – as well as a range of local government, corporate, community and media partners.

Accessible Arts CEO Kerry Comerford: “Whether you’re an artist or arts worker with disability, or you’re involved in arts administration, programming, infrastructure or policy, Arts Activated is an event that’s not to be missed. Participants will come away informed and connected in new and exciting ways that will help them develop careers, audiences and creative practice.”        

To register or find out more, go to: www.artsactivated2019.com

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Contact: Michael Badorrek | Marketing Manager | +61 0431 594 007 | marketing@aarts.net.au

PRESENTERS AND SPEAKERS ANNOUNCED FOR ARTS ACTIVATED 2019 CONFERENCE

Top: Jeremy Smith, Angel Dixon, Gayle Kennedy | Bottom: Duncan Meerding, Rosemary Kayess, Caroline Bowditch

Sydney, 22 July 2019: We’re excited to announce that some leading and influential figures from Australia’s arts, culture, disability and inclusion sectors will be speaking and presenting at the upcoming Arts Activated 2019 Conference (Sydney | 22-23 August). 

Over 35 artists, arts workers, policymakers, culture experts and technology gurus are set to share their knowledge and insights over the two days of the conference, Australia’s leading forum for making arts, culture and events more accessible for the 20% of Australians who live with disability or who are Deaf. 

The conference will take place at the Waterview centre in Bicentennial Park in Sydney Olympic Park on Thursday  22 and Friday 23 August.

Some of the local artists who’ll be involved include: designer Duncan Meerding; filmmaker and theatremaker Emily Dash; writer Gayle Kennedy; and actor, musician, and writer Glenn McKenzie. 

Advocates and policymakers who’ll be speaking include: UNSW Disability Innovation Institute Director and member of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Rosemary Kayess; disability activist, model and Queensland Young Australian of the Year Angel Dixon; and Sydney Inner West Council Access and Inclusion Planning Leader Glenn Redmayne. 

Arts and culture experts who’ll be involved include Google’s Creative Lab Team Lead Kristin Sillitoe; Director of Major Performing Arts Projects at the Australia Council for the Arts Morwenna Collett; and Director of Community, Emerging and Experimental Arts at the Australia Council for the Arts Jeremy Smith.  

Disability arts experts who’ll be speaking include Arts Access Australia CEO Megan Shand; new General Manager of Bus Stop Films Tracey Corbin-Matchett; new Executive Director of Arts Access Victoria Caroline Bowditch; and DADAA Strategic Projects Manager Jacqueline Homer. 

Joining our local speakers will be leading UK artist and disability arts advocate Rachel Gadsden,  our first international keynote speaker,  We’ll be announcing our second international keynote speaker very soon. 

Don’t miss out on hearing these and other leading figures talk about their work, ideas and activism. Places are limited. BOOK NOW!  

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Contact: Michael Badorrek | Marketing Manager | +61 0431 594 007 | marketing@aarts.net.au

LEADING UK ARTIST RACHEL GADSDEN ANNOUNCED AS KEYNOTE SPEAKER FOR ARTS ACTIVATED 2019 CONFERENCE

INITIAL PROGRAM LAUNCHED WITH 22 SESSIONS & EVENTS

Dr Rachel Gadsden

Sydney, 21 June 2019: One of the world’s leading disability arts advocates, British artist Rachel Gadsden, has been announced as one of several high-profile international speakers at the upcoming Arts Activated 2019 Conference, Australia’s leading disability arts forum.

Ms Gadsden, who has just unveiled a major new work in Paris commissioned by FIFA for the 2019 Women’s World Cup, will be the opening plenary speaker at the conference which aims to help fast track the process of making arts and culture more accessible for the 20% of Australians who live with a disability or who are Deaf.

Produced by Accessible Arts – NSW’s peak arts and disability organisation – the conference will take place at Sydney’s Waterview centre at Sydney Olympic Park from 22 – 23 August 2019 and will attract up to 200 artists, arts workers, disability advocates, researchers, policymakers and other experts from across the arts, cultural and disability sectors. Find out more at: www.artsactivated2019.com

Ms Gadsden is a visual artist, performance artist and artistic director who has been practicing for over 25 years. She creates both solo and collaborative art through, painting, performance, digital film and animation. Ms Gadsden has been the first contemporary artist appointed to Hampton Court Palace, has undertaken four major commissions for the UK Parliament, and has completed major commissions for the four most recent Paralympic Games. She is exhibited internationally and has been involved in many key international arts events and festivals as both an artist and disability arts advocate. Her work explores themes of fragility and resilience, and is informed by a life-long lung condition called retinoschisis which requires a syringe driver to inject her with medication at one-minute intervals to keep her alive. She also has visual impairment. Find out more at: www.rachelgadsden.com

Ms Gadsden: “I’m passionate about creating art. My work explores the fragilities and hopes of the human condition and I am driven to create art that contributes to bringing about social and cultural change relating to disability globally. Through my role as a disabled artist, activist, and artistic director, I facilitate the means to increase artistic and cultural opportunities for people with disability. It’s becoming an increasingly important objective to break down the barriers that prevent people with disabilities being included in mainstream arts.”

Conference organisers have also announced the initial program for the event. The 22 sessions and events will include a range of thought-provoking plenaries, panel discussions, workshops and networking functions.

Some of the topics to be considered include: authentic casting and representation; increasing participation in arts, culture and events by making programming and venues more accessible; boosting mainstream training opportunities for artists and arts workers with disability; reshaping the disability arts narrative; technology and design trends for universal access; and improving mainstream engagement with the work of artists with disability.

The conference is being supported by the NSW Government (via Create NSW and Destination NSW) as well as a range of local government, corporate, community and media partners. Ms Gadsen’s attendance is being supported by the British Council.

Accessible Arts CEO Kerry Comerford: “Whether you’re an artist or arts worker with disability, or you’re involved in arts administration, programming, infrastructure or policy, Arts Activated is an event that’s not to be missed. Participants will come away informed and connected in new and exciting ways that will help them develop careers, audiences and creative practice.”

Registrations are available for artists, not-for-profits and other organisations, there’s a special Early Bird discount of 20% for delegates who purchase registrations by June 24, and extra discounts are available for organisations purchasing multiple registrations.

To register or find out more, go to: www.artsactivated2019.com

To view a video about Rachel Gadsden’s new commission for the 2019 Women’s World Cup, go to:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JI7hCJ_SmrY

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Contact: Michael Badorrek | Marketing Manager | +61 0431 594 007 | marketing@aarts.net.au

ARTS ACTIVATED 2019 EARLY BIRD REGISTRATION EXTENDED TO JUNE 24

Sydney, 12 June, 2019: We’re responding to feedback from our community members and other stakeholders who are keen to come to Arts Activated 2019 but need a bit more time to organise their schedules.

So our Early Bird 20% discount is now available until Monday 24 June.

And it’s available to artists, not-for-profits and other organisations.

The conference only happens every two years and spaces are limited. Don’t miss out on you chance to get activated. Places are limited so BOOK NOW!

Contact: Michael Badorrek | Marketing Manager | +61 0431 594 007 | marketing@aarts.net.au

REGISTRATIONS OPEN FOR ARTS ACTIVATED 2019 CONFERENCE

EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT OF 20% UNTIL JUNE 14

In the foreground there is s woman at a lectern with a man in a wheelchair beside her and a male Auslan interpreter beside him. They are facing an audience in tiered seating in an auditorium.
Plenary session at Arts Activated 2016 Conference

Sydney, 3 June, 2019: Organisers of the Arts Activated 2019 Conference are inviting artists, arts workers, disability advocates and researchers to take part in the event and help fast track the process of making the arts in Australia more accessible for people with disability or who are Deaf.  

Attracting over 250 delegates, the conference will take place at Sydney’s Waterview centre at Sydney Olympic Park over August 22 and 23, and is an important forum for planning real change and growth across Australia’s disability arts sector.

The program – which will be announced in just a few weeks – will include over 20 sessions and events and will feature several high profile Australian and international guests.

Registrations are available for artists, not-for-profits and other organisations, there’s a special Early Bird discount of 20% for delegates who purchase registrations by June 14, and extra discounts are available for organisations purchasing multiple registrations.  

The biennial event is produced by Accessible Arts, NSW’s peak arts and disability organisation.

Accessible Arts CEO Kerry Comerford: “Arts Activated is all about sharing ideas and approaches for making the arts and cultural events more accessible for artists and audiences with disability.

“The theme of this year’s conference is ‘Making It Happen Today’ and so the focus is on fast tracking improvements to accessibility across the arts, cultural and event sectors.

“The conference provides a really valuable opportunity for artists with disability to share their knowledge and experience as well as connect with other artists and arts workers from NSW and across Australia.

“It’s also a unique platform for people working in the arts, cultural and event sectors to share their approaches to accessibility and better understand how to increase participation in their programs, performances, exhibitions and events.

“The intersection of disability and the arts brings lots of opportunities and challenges for both individuals and organisations and Arts Activated provides an incredibly valuable stage to spotlight issues and showcase best practice.

“The conference only happens every two years and spaces are limited so we’re encouraging artists, arts workers, disability advocates and researchers to register as soon as possible to make sure they don’t miss out on their chance to get activated.”

To register or find out more, please visit the Arts Activated 2019 Conference website: www.artsactivated2019.com

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Contact: Michael Badorrek | Marketing Manager | +61 0431 594 007 | marketing@aarts.net.au