Artists are invited to submit proposals for the creation of work which will be presented at a high profile arts venue in London in 2019.

Shape Arts is developing an event programme which will examine the movement of social barriers in relation to disabled people, and attempt to reposition the role of the disabled artist in a wider social and political context.
We are looking for proposals for a piece of work which will explore the movement of social barriers and subvert perceptions of disabled people within visual arts institutions. Inspired by the Fluxus movement and interventionist art, we are particularly interested in what collaborations between artist and spectator might generate. We aim to challenge and confront perceptions of disability and disability art and open up definitions of what disability art could be.  

Proposals are invited from disabled artists (who self-identify as a disabled person) or art collectives (of disabled artists) whose work involves one or more of the following contemporary art practices: work for digital platforms, drawing, craft, installation, moving image, painting, performance, live art, photography, sculpture, and sound.  We welcome collaborations between artists.  
Artworks which are to some extent participatory or interactive are particularly welcome, including live art, performance art or art with a digital element, but we are open to all visual and audio works which engage audiences with this topic and offers new perspectives on the curatorial theme.
We are also open to proposals for artist-led workshops which address the proposal theme.

Shape is looking for disabled artists with a track record of context-led and/or socially engaged practice, the experience of working in relation to audiences or communities and with an interest in, and understanding of, disability art. We welcome applications with a self-reflective, ideas-led approach which seek to actively involve visitors or a particular community, either through the process of production of the artwork and/or its experience. We are looking for thought-provoking proposals that offer audiences new ways of engaging with and understanding art by disabled people.

Shape is committed to working with artists from every background and social group, and we particularly encourage proposals from artists from BAME communities and marginalised groups.

About Shape

Shape Arts is a disability-led arts organisation which works to improve access to culture for disabled people by providing opportunities for disabled artists. Our mission is for the full inclusion of disabled people in arts and culture as artists, audiences and workers.
Shape is committed to equality and diversity in employment and all aspects of its programme and operation. We’re keen to raise Shape’s profile as an organisation which engages new audiences and changes perspectives through contemporary art.

All of our work is informed by the Social Model of Disability. If you self-define or view yourself as a disabled person, then you are eligible to apply for this opportunity. You do not need to disclose details of your disability or supply any medical evidence. For a definition of the Social Model of Disability visit the Shape website:

Expressions of Interest

Deadline for Proposals: No later than midnight BST on 30 September 2018 and should include:

  • Your proposed idea and approach to the commission (max word count 700 words)
  • Full materials list
  • Visual examples of your work (6-12 good quality images), including any examples of previously commissioned works of a similar scale.
  • CV and Artist Statement
  • Budget outline (up to £5K)

Please email proposals to [email protected] 

Alternative format applications are welcome.*

Artists will be contacted regarding their proposal by 15th October.

Shape’s programme is still in development and we aim to do this in line with the submissions we receive. We aim to have dates and timelines for this programme confirmed by the end of 2018. This programme will be delivered in early 2019.
Artists must be in a position to complete and present the work for February or March 2019 (official dates TBC).

If you have any questions, please contact:

Sara Dziadik, Programme Coordinator
E-mail: [email protected]
Telephone +44 (0) 20 7424 7330
Address: Shape Arts, Deane House Studios, 27 Greenwood Place, London NW5 1LB


*If this proposal process is inaccessible to you, you can apply using an alternative format. To do apply in an alternative format, if you have any other access related questions in relation to applying, or if would like this call out in an alternative format, please contact Sara Dziadik.



Image: Photo by Diana Peedle-Calloo