Art of Difference 2006

Date posted: 
18 April 2006

What is Art of Difference?

Art of Difference is a conference and arts program staged at Gasworks Arts
Park that creates professional development opportunities for people with
disabilities in the creative arts. Art of Difference will take place on 18,
19 and 20 May 2006 at Gasworks Arts Park, Albert Park, Victoria, Australia.

What will happen at the Conference?

The program is focused around two major themes: Professional Artistic
Practice; and Community Cultural Development, with strands of both themes
running across all three days. A number of leaders in arts management and
leading artists will help to facilitate the conference. The conference will
also feature a series of participatory workshops and masterclasses.

What are some performance and exhibition highlights?

Julie McNamara's Pig Tales (UK)

Pig Tales evokes a fantasy world created by people who have been brutalised
by organised religion and the psychiatric system. Highly acclaimed in its
several international tours, this production is a wild ride into gender and
the resilience of the human spirit, told with unexpected humour and moments
of great tenderness.

Ramesh Meyyappan's This Side Up (Singapore)

A hilarious and touching physical theatre work, this is fully accessible to
both Deaf and hearing audiences. His work has toured to the UK, France,
Austria, New Zealand, Poland and the US. This Side Up is about one man's
battle against the urban sprawl and getting back to one's roots.
Unforgettable characters are presented with madcap humour within a
wonderfully visual narrative world.

Weave Movement Theatre (Vic) and Restless Dance Company (SA)

In a five-day creative development, conference delegates are invited to
witness a choreographic development process before a final showing and
discussion forum on Dance and Disability led by Ausdance.

Other performers include iconic independent musician Louis Tillett (NSW),
writer/performer Michael Crane and US historian and social activist Joan
Nestle. They will be joined a line-up of talented artists performing across
numerous art forms, including spoken word, comedy, music and visual arts.

Visual arts exhibitions include Ross Barber's (Qld) wall texts installation
work, Quartet for Four Love Songs; landscape works from the central desert
and regional Victoria, featuring the Colour Gang artists' group, Gippsland
Victoria; and Off the Wall, a community based project creating a 'wallpaper'
of images.

When will the full program be released?

Full program details will be available at www.gasworks.org.au from 1 April
2006. Email [email protected] for enquiries. Please note:
expressions of interest to exhibit or perform at Art of Difference 2006
closed in December 2005. Printed brochures in several formats will be
available soon after that date.

What sort of workshops will be on offer?

We are planning workshops in: leadership, comedy stage craft, Auslan
interpreting for performance, writing, marketing and promotion, printmaking,
and voice. Details, price and booking procedures will be available from 1
April 2006.

Can I still express an interest to speak, exhibit and/or perform at the
conference?

No, expressions of interest for appearing at Art of Difference closed in
December 2005. However, we would love for you to attend the conference and
performances, or to enrol in a workshop. Details of how to do this will be
available from 1 April.

Will Art of Difference be accessible to a range of disabilities?

Yes, we are working to ensure accessibility is of a high standard. The
program will be available in a number of formats, and at the time of
registration we will be asking for any special access needs.

Who should attend the conference?

Artists with and without disabilities, arts workers, disability workers,
academics, support workers, those with an interest in the arts and
disability issues. Art of Difference is not disability type-specific and
is appropriate for people with an intellectual, physical and sensory
disability, acquired brain injury, neurological impairment and those with
mental or other chronic health issues.

What if I can't afford to attend the conference?

We're yet to finalise conference costs, but we are committed to keeping it
affordable, with a range of entry options on offer. We are working towards
subsidising costs of attending the conference for a limited number of people
in financial need.

Where can I get more information?

Our website at www.gasworks.org.au will be continually updated as
more information comes to hand. The official program release date for Art
of Difference 2006 is 1 April 2006.

You can contact us at [email protected] or phone Simon
Abrahams, Festivals and Events Producer on 03 8606 4202.

View the Art of Difference flyer.