Intersection of Arts and Disability

The following resources explore the relationships between art, culture, identity, and disability and how each informs the other.

Intersecting Identities among Young Artists with Disabilities
By: Jennifer Sulewski, Heike Boeltzig & Rooshey Hasnain, 2012
Disability arts in the United Kingdom and disability culture in the United States play important roles in expressing a positive disability identity. This paper reports on expressions about identity, in both artwork and reflective words, of 47 young artists with disabilities who were finalists in the VSA arts / Volkswagen arts competition between 2002 and 2005. As part of an evaluation of this program, we reviewed the artists' application essays and artwork. In doing so, we found a wealth of information on their perceptions of what it means to be a person with a disability and an artist, and how these two identities intersect. The findings provide insights into the role of the arts in identity formation for young people with disabilities, and point to the potential for future research on how arts and disability interact.

Artists Overcoming Disabilities
By: Katherine Tyrrell, 2013
This article talks about stories of artists with disabilities and how the making of the art may be adapted, but the quality is not affected.

‘Effecting Change; Disability, Culture and Art’?
By: Colin Barnes, Professor of Disability Studies, University of Leed
This presentation explores the relationship between culture, politics and art, provides a brief overview of the emergence of the disability arts movement, and critically evaluates some of the important implications of disability art and a disability culture.

Articles and Personal Stories about Disability
By: e-Bility disABILITY information resources
This collection of articles and stories about disability were submitted by visitors and published monthly over a period of 10+ years. It was an opportunity for people to share their experiences, raise awareness, discuss innovations and to have a voice on a wide range of topics that included living with a disability, accessible travel, disability arts, recreation and more, long before the rise of personal blogs. Depending on when they were published some content may no longer be current, all are worth reading.