I am delighted to be leading a new research project Irregular Art Schools supported by a £246,000 grant by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). Beginning on 1 February, it will co-develop and pilot different professional development opportunities with learning disabled artists in the Leeds City Region, testing how existing structures such as artist-led spaces, universities, publishing and social care can better serve learning disabled individuals.
The research team brings together a range of skills and expertise across visual art and social care. This includes staff and artists from supported studio Pyramid, members of artist-led space Assembly House, staff from Leeds City Council’s Adult Social Care Team and Co-Investigator Dr Katie Graham, Lecturer in the Department of Social Policy and Social Work at University of York.
Over the next two and a half years, the team will be:
• examining social care policy with social workers;
• leading two national think tanks on artist-facilitation;
• experimenting with inclusive academic publishing processes;
• trialling an artist-led model of professional development with Assembly House;
• exploring ways to make the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies more inclusive and accessible to learning disabled artists. There will be opportunities for staff and students in the School to participate.
For more information, easy reads and updates visit the project's website: http://www.irregularartschools.co.uk/ www.irregularartschools.co.uk/
Hello everyone. On Twitter, I’m giving away one copy of my book ‘Inclusive Curating in Contemporary Art: A Practical Guide’!
To enter this prize draw:
1. Follow me @jadefrench
2. Retweet the tweet
Ends 16/10/2020. Winner announced 19/10/2020.
Terms and Conditions
- 1 entry per person
- Must follow @jadefrench and retweet post
- Deadline is midnight 16/10/2020. Any entries after this will be ineligible
- Must be willing to provide a postal address
- This address will not be shared and will only be used for the purposes of this prize draw
- I do not accept responsibility for lost postage or incorrect address
- Winner will be selected anonymously using TweetDraw (a computer process)
- I reserve the right to cancel the prize draw at any stage if deemed necessary or circumstances arise that are outside my control
- The prize is non-redeemable, no alternate to the Prize will be available
- The winner will be contacted via Twitter direct message
- If I am unable to contact the winner after making reasonable efforts to do so after 36 hours, then the Prize will be deemed to have been forfeited, and I reserve the right to offer the Prize to the entrant whose name is next drawn at random
Hello, my name is Jade and I am an artist-facilitator.
I have been invited to put together an online exhibition as part of the National Advocacy Conference in October. This exhibition is all about having your voice heard, being in control of your life and speaking out. I am looking for 6 learning disabled artists to take part by showing some of their existing artwork.
If you are interested in being involved, please look at the information pack below. You are also very welcome to get in touch with me and ask questions. You can email me on: firstname.lastname@example.org
Download the Information Pack
Explore care and its role in curatorial practice with the British Art Network’s Early Career Curators Group.
The word ‘curator’ derives from the Latin curare, ‘to care’. Curators are charged with the physical and intellectual care of collections – the artworks, objects and narratives found within our cultural institutions. However, it is evident that the concept of care within our sector must stretch beyond the guardianship of cultural heritage, to the care of and concern for those around us.
Curating, Care and Community will explore the increasingly urgent matter of how we care for ourselves, our colleagues, our collaborators and our audiences through our work in the arts, within and beyond institutions.
Hosted by Jemma Desai, presentations and panels will address:
BAN members and the wider curatorial community are invited to share experiences and ideas in a supportive, reflective environment. To facilitate sharing, participants will be sent some questions on the theme of care to consider in advance, though there will be no pressure to contribute. There will be opportunities for questions throughout and participation will be encouraged through polls and Google Jamboard.
Khairani Barokka, UAL Decolonising Arts Institute
Sam Curtis, Bethlem Gallery
Amrita Dhallu, Tate Modern
Jade French, University of Leeds
Beth Hughes, Arts Council Collection
Alison Jones, Tate Liverpool
Adi Lerer, independent curator
Kirsteen Macdonald, Chapter Thirteen
Louise Shelley, The Voice of Domestic Workers and students of the MRes: Art: Exhibition Studies (Central Saint Martins)
This event has been programmed by the British Art Network’s Early Career Curators Group, a supportive forum of 14 curators brought together to share experiences and thinking around curating British art. The seminar aims to be relevant for curators at all stages of their career and is an opportunity to have open conversations and learn from each other.
Applications are currently open for the next group, renamed the Emerging Curators Group, to be active October 2020 to June 2021.
Early Career Curator Group 2019–20:Rebecca Burton (Harewood House Trust)
Alice Eden (Leamington Spa Art Gallery and Museum)
Mels Evers (Tate Britain)
James Finch (Tate Britain)
Becky Gee (York Museums Trust)
Samantha Howard (The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery)
Marcus Jack (Glasgow School of Art)
Tessa Kilgariff (English Heritage)
Jessie Petheram (National Museums Liverpool)
Helen Record (Royal Academy of Arts)
Emily Riddle (The Hepworth Wakefield)
Tor Scott (Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art)
Rachel Smith (independent)
Charlotte Thomas (National Academy for Educational Leadership Wales)
The British Art Network is led and supported by Tate and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, with additional funding provided by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.
Photo credit. Documentation of 2018 performance by Charlie Jeffery What’s Love Got To Do With It? curated by Vanessa Brito and Kirsteen Macdonald Photo © Jack McCombe Courtesy of Kirsteen Macdonald
My first book will be released on 31st July 2020. I spoke to ICOM UK about the book and how it came about. Article republished below.
Book release – Inclusive Curating in Contemporary Art: A Practical Guide by Jade French.
ICOM UK spoke to Jade French to find out more about the book and how she came to write it.
“My journey to writing this book did not begin in a museum, gallery, or artist studio, but in a self-advocacy organisation supporting learning disabled people. Before I began my career in museums, twelve years ago I worked in disability support not long after the UK’s 2001 personalisation agenda had been introduced. A key component of this highly influential policy, which revolutionised many aspects of care, was ‘person-centred planning’. Crucially, this advocated that people’s care should no longer be decided on solely by professionals, but instead, determined by the individuals themselves who should be empowered to assess their own needs and shape their own support.
Nearly two decades later, this remains a powerful message. While at the time my interests in art and support work seemed worlds apart, as my new book demonstrates, the practice of person-centred planning can prove incredibly useful beyond the field of social care and can be applied to other sectors like museums. Like social care, the museum world has also experienced concerns over inclusion, representation and power move from the margins to the centre. As a result, a growing number of museums have sought to widen participation with curating with people conceptualised as communities, visitors or audiences, but often to varying degrees of quality and success.
Based on person-centred planning approaches, this book presents “inclusive curating,” a facilitated five-step process enabling a wide demographic of people to become curators. Grounded in a case study which details an exhibition developed by learning disabled curators, this book offers guidance in putting inclusive curating into action alongside a range of practical resources and key debates. Curating is often considered an exclusive job for a privileged few. But, by breaking it down using as demonstrated throughout this book, not only does curating become more usable for more people, it also contributes to understanding the ways in which our cultural spaces can become democratized.
This book will be of interest to museum professionals, museology academics and students, artists and community organisers interested in ways to curate exhibitions in inclusive and accessible ways. I hope this book presents not only a practical curatorial process but contributes to broadening the ways in which curating – and crucially the curator – is defined.”
Release date 31st July 2020
Available for pre-order with: https://arc-humanities.org/products/i-73110-100101-57-7411/
50% Discount code: ARCFRENCH50, valid until the end of December 2020
Thank you for your interest in this easy read accessible summary. This resource has received a lot of traffic this past week from all over the world. I am receiving many emails, messages and enquiries; I am sorry if I have not yet been able to answer your enquiry - please bare with me.
- This resource was created by myself (a white woman) specifically for the white learning disabled people I currently support, thus is a person-centred tool for this particular group of individuals. I have now provided the word document below for you to download so you are able to edit it to best work for the specific groups or individuals you are supporting. [You might not have the font, it's called Linnotte if you like it]
- The definition of 'the police' is still not yet there as it does not capture the complexity, but I am finding it difficult to break this down inclusively as of yet. I am still working on it. It will likely take a completely separate resource to do this. I welcome help and for others to have a go themselves - we needs lots of people working on developing a range of resources.
- I have corrected the images to better work for screen readers (fingers crossed - I'm new to this!) thanks to the input of Jens Welsch. Many many thanks for your time and advice.
- I have added an extra video link to the resource. I found showing videos of Black activists telling their stories and short clips of local protests in action helpful alongside discussing the guide. The individuals I tested this with were able to spot local city landmarks in the video and it really helped connect them.
WORD DOCUMENT DOWNLOAD
Today is BBC Arts #MuseumFromHome day! Check out my twitter thread below exploring objects and projects at Catalyst Science Discovery Centre and Museum where I facilitate community engagement. Feat. some very old soap, smelly industrial heritage and a tree that's been to space!
Thrilled to be invited to participate at the Art Brut World Forum as part of Tokyo 2020's Japan Cultural Expo next month. Practitioners and experts from around the world engaged in the promotion of cultural arts such as Art Brut and Disability Art across various themes.
I will be speaking on the theme public policy and the arts alongside panellists Martine Lusardy the Director of Halle Saint Pierre Museum and Yoshiyuki Oshita the Director National Museum of Art, with commentator Jean-Marc Ayrault the Former Prime Minister of France.
Full programme and tickets available now
Join us in exploring the intersection of art, activism and language with invited artists and researchers. This community-oriented research day aims to discuss resistant art practices, exploring the role of art-making and co-production in contemporary art institutions.
There will be a series of presentations by artists, activists and community researchers, led by artist-researcher Emma Curd as part of her PhD. The project aims to democratise the institutional language encountered in museums and galleries, and will conclude in the production of a printed toolkit designed to disarm authoritative voices in contemporary art spaces.
This event aims to empower individuals and groups in the gallery space, to boost ownership of art works in Tate's public collection, as well as providing a sense of comfort and agency within spaces that aren't necessarily welcoming.
11.00 - 12.00 Audio session and talk with Community Collective about Tracy Emin Audio Project
12.00 - 12.45 Artist Nina Edge and Community Collective discuss ‘Making Sense of Art’
12.45 - 13.30 Break
13.30 - 14.15 Welcome and Introduction: Shared Language and ‘The People’s Glossary’ with Emma Curd
14:15 - 15.00 Discussing Visual Interpretation for Auto Agents at Bluecoat with Jade French
15:00 - 15.45 The Importance of Gossip in Feminism and Art Worlds with Liv Wynter
15.45 - 16.30 Feminism, Protest Aesthetics & Zine-making (as an act of resistance) with Maggie Matic
Last week I was delighted to discuss my PhD's exhibition Auto Agents on Made In Liverpool's news piece, along with Leah Jones. We were invited to discuss the exhibition along with events we were running at Brindley to coincide with World Down Syndrome Awareness Day
Watch the piece here: https://t.co/4koHUmU1g0