Help to support emerging and mid-career artists through the Shape Open, our groundbreaking annual exhibition supported by our patron Yinka Shonibare MBE.

The Shape Open is a group show of artwork by disabled and non-disabled artists created in response to a disability-centred theme. Held in high-profile spaces such as Bow Arts' Nunnery Gallery, Portobello Gallery, Yinka Shonibare's Guest Projects, The Ecology Pavilion and our own pop-up galleries, The Open provides a space where disabled and non-disabled artists can discuss views and ideas about issues and topics which are often sidelined within artistic debate.

The Shape Open Exhibition provides a fantastic platform for disabled artists to show their work. Such exhibitions offer great opportunities for artists to be discovered by institutions and large audiences. Similar exhibitions have helped to contribute to the development of my own personal career

                                            --     Yinka Shonibare MBE

Our aim is for the Shape Open to not only show excellent art, but also to open up dialogues around disability and to become the benchmark exhibition for accessibility. Through the Open, we aim to create opportunities, tackle discrimination and provide full inclusion and accessibility for all disabled artists and art audiences.

A large white room with people discussing art

Image: Taken from our Shape Open 2017 exhibition, The Ecology Pavilion.


Everyone has the right to freely participate in the cultural life of the community (and) to enjoy the arts

                                         --     Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 27

Everyone should be able to access the arts, yet too many events, organisations, buildings and processes are inaccessible to disabled people. This exhibition can affect change by setting an example on accessibility within the arts, engaging the wider community in art, raising the profile of disabled artists and creating dialogue at the intersection of art, disability and access.

What will my money go towards?

  • Making the exhibition free for artists to apply
  • The cost of producing flyers and posters to help to promote the exhibition
  • The cost of making audio descriptions of the exhibition works
  • The cost of printing a quality exhibition catalogue
  • The cost of making this a fully accessible exhibition that artists and the public alike can enjoy and take part in

Click here to donate

Click on the above donate button to select a donation amount

Thank you!


The next Open will take place in early 2018 - sign up to our e-newsletter at the very bottom of this page for news and updates.

To speak to one of our team regarding sponsorship or fundraising in relation to this or other high quality artistic events, please call 0207 424 7330 or email arts@shapearts.org.uk. Thank you for your generous support.