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Lazy Sunday: A patchwork of possibilities. TB or not TB. No question.

23 September 2014

Blog Deborah Caulfield

Day in Life (working title) 2014.

I have a problem. I can’t (as in it’s not happening) draw, paint, write or otherwise create. Cook, even. Much. These days. Apart from Tzatzki, which doesn’t involve heat, so strictly speaking isn’t cooking. Pathetic. Nor can I read. I finished a book two weeks ago and since then I haven’t managed to start another. Pathetic. Yet! I’m surrounded by stimuli, natural as well as the other kind. So last Sunday I took photographs of some of the things around me; in...

Doing daily life in Tsukiji and Ginza

22 September 2014

Blog Gini

Close-up photo of the wellknown 'person in wheelchair' image reinterpreted as a raised silver cut-out on a white background wall. A solid rectangle joins the lower large wheel almost to the upper small circle, the head. The arm and the chairback are paral

Travelling with a smallish suitcase, mostly full of stuff to keep my body ticking over, and gifts, there is not much room for clothes. I get very fed-up with wearing the same stuff over and over. Today seemed just the day for a ladies lunch and for checking out some local fashion. We try a couple of sushi restaurants in Tsukiji, but they don't want me. The first says yes and then no, all smiles and welcoming body language, but saying my wheelchair will be inconvenient. The second has a very...

Housebound in Tokyo

20 September 2014

Blog Gini

a two story building in corrigated tin cladding. It has 5 visible wooden balconies, one on the ground floor with rush matting drapped in front of whatever opening is behind it. There are lots of small plant pots with spiderplants and similar grassy things

My temperamentally clicking wheelchair has been whisked away and I sit frustrated watching the day pass by. It seemed like a good idea at the time - to get it properly checked out here by the maintenance guys at Yamaha. But the sun shines, the river calls, Tokyo hums gentle enticement. My chair is promised back by 10.00 tomorrow, batteries fully charged and ready to roll. Confined without my wheelchair, I need purpose to my day and I plan to draw. The photographing of low-rise Tokyo dwellings...


18 September 2014

Blog Gini

A very blue image of water and sky; water, the infinity pool, taking up the bottom third of the view. The mist fountains mask the horizon and melt into the low lying white cloud. Three white masts with white sails are just visible peeking above the mist a

Kasairinkaikoen is the train station before Disneyland; Kasai Rinkai is a large park on the coast with access to the sea, containing Tokyo Sea Life, a great glass observation platform, a Ferris wheel, picnic areas, restaurants and some great places to sit and relax. Tokyo Sea Life, today's destination, is on three levels. The top one is circular with an offset glass observation /information dome. This circle is almost surrounded by an infinity pool that blends visually into the sea,...

Playing with words and rolling the terminal roof in Yokohama.

17 September 2014

Blog Gini

looking down on the wood-clad roof/floor of the terminal building at people sunbathing, relaxing and promenading. Looking inland with Yokohama skyline as a backdrop, you can just fit glimpses of blue sea on each side of the building.In white paint on the

Yokohama is also a familiar destination, the annual visit to its Chinatown being a regular enticement. Sadly this year our favourite dim sum restaurant has closed. Friends choosing the alternative venue are carnivores and simply don't understand eating without meat. But one of them has spent time in a wheelchair and has an understanding of access requirements. Shopping for strange Chinese goods is part of the deal, browsing the two main, crowded streets, is fascinating and as usual the...

Review: Actors Touring Company [ATC]: Blind Hamlet

15 September 2014


Produced by Actors Touring Company [ATC] Blind Hamlet is currently doing the rounds on a nationwide tour. Written by Iranian playwright Nassim Soleimanpour, best known for his work White Rabbit, Red Rabbit, Colin Hambrook looks at how the author plays with theatrical convention using an exemplary charm and wit to explore metaphors on ‘sight’ and 'truth'

Review: Unlimited 2014: Caroline Bowditch: Falling in Love with Frida

13 September 2014


Combining monologue and dance, Caroline Bowditch’s Falling in Love with Frida is a passionate reclamation of Frida Kahlo as a disabled artist and a reflection on how we are remembered by others. Victoria Wright reviews a performance at the Queen Elizabeth Hall as part of the Unlimited Festival.

Unlimited 2014: Touretteshero: Backstage in Biscuit Land

13 September 2014


Victoria Wright learns never to put an elephant in an enveleope after experiencing Jess Thom, aka Touretteshero, and her accomplice Jess Mabel Jones performing Backstage in Biscuit Land as part of Unlimited at the Southbank Centre.

Review: Penny Pepper: Lost in Spaces

11 September 2014


Award winning writer, poet, performer and rights activist, Penny Pepper presented her highly anticipated, unique one-woman show, Lost in Spaces at the Soho Theatre last Monday. Review by Colin Hambrook

Review: Unlimited 2014: Jo Bannon: Exposure

10 September 2014


Jo Bannon's Exposure was a ten minute one-on-one performance event, which took place in a room on the fourth floor of the Royal Festival Hall. Sue Austin describes its impact on her in the context of her own live performance art


Opinion: Dao Writers on Poetry

19 September 2014


Dao is building a collection of articles about poetry and poets, and within that aim we're looking to feature a disability perspective in one way shape or form. So far we've published an article by Owen Lowery on a selection of war poets; a profile of George MacKay-Brown by Richard Longstaff, personal explorations of the first three collections of Seamus Heaney by Anthony Hurford and an essay analysing Wilfred Owen's anti-war poem...

Unlimited 2014: Chisato Minamimura: Ring the Changes+

29 August 2014


Whilst eagerly awaiting the delights of Unlimited Festival next week, Sarah Pickthall attended a recent sharing of work in progress of Chisato Minamimura’s commissioned work Ring the Changes+ at TripSpace Studios in Haggerston - a collaboration produced by digital artist Nick Rothwell and Body>Data >Space.


Interview: Unlimited 2014: Ian Johnston: Dancer

18 August 2014


Created with the late Adrian Howells, 'Dancer' is a gentle provocation on what it is to be a 'dancer'. Producer Lucy Gaizely answered a few of Dao’s questions about what promises to be a fun and thought-provoking show in the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre on Saturday 6 September.

Interview: Unlimited 2014: Owen Lowery: Otherwise Unchanged

12 August 2014


Owen Lowery is the author of a volume of poetry, Otherwise Unchanged (Carcanet 2012), and is the recipient of an Unlimited award. John O’Donoghue interviewed the poet by email about the inspiration, form and development of his work providing an insight into his creative identity. What follows is an edited version of this correspondence.

SenseAbility presentation: Ten Years of Dao: a potted history

17 June 2014


Dao Editor Colin Hambrook was invited to speak about Disability Arts Online at SenseAbility – an event held at the Pound Arts Centre, Corsham from 10-14 June. The festival, exploring inclusion in the arts and community, was organized by Tanvir Bush in partnership with Bath Spa University. This feature contains a transcript of his presentation

Gallery: Shape Creative Steps: David Hevey documentaries

9 June 2014


As part of London-based disability arts development agency, Shape's Creative Steps programme, seven disabled creative practitioners participated in a series of fascinating film documentaries. Made by award-winning director, screenwriter and photographer, David Hevey, the purpose of this documentary-series is to act as a calling card  highlighting the talents of the disabled artists that Shape supports - and who in turn, support...

Poetry: Penny Pepper: Lost in Spaces

19 May 2014


Penny Pepper is a writer, poet and performer with an extraordinary versatility to her work. Genre-defying and quirky, her work is infused with her passion as a veteran disability arts activist.

Poetry: Julie McNamara: Chaos Calls

17 May 2014


Julie McNamara has been a tour de force within the field of Disability Arts for more than twenty years. Her current theatre work: Let Me Stay is a recipient of an Unlimited 2014 award, and is currently touring. Julie has also had her poetry published in several anthologies. Below Dao previews a selection from her first collection Chaos Calls, published by Vital Xposure.

Poetry: Owen Lowery: Otherwise Unchanged

12 May 2014


Writing and studying poetry was initially part of Owen Lowery's recovery following a spinal injury incurred while competing in a charity judo tournament as a young professional sportsman. Having recently won an Unlimited Award, Lowery's first major poetry collection, 'Otherwise Unchanged', was published by Carcanet in 2012. The work speaks in a range of voices, drawing from poetic traditions far and wide.