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Audio Description

Heaton’s work doesn’t begin with him or his body. It starts with society’s view of him and of disabled people. Hence his work reclaims the words and symbols used to diminish disabled people. ‘Raspberry ripple’, cockney rhyming slang for ‘cripple’, here becomes a bright pink jubilant neon.

About Tony Heaton

Arguably the Godfather of the UK Disability Arts Movement, Tony Heaton OBE can claim to have made several of the landmark iconic pieces that helped define the DAM.  He has exhibited nationally and internationally, with his major commission Gold Lamé winning the commission to be the first sculpture sited on the Liverpool Plinth in 2018.  His Monument to the Unintended Performer was installed on the Big 4 outside Channel 4 TV in celebration of the 2012 London Paralympics, and his neon works have been displayed on London’s Southbank and the Lumiere Festival in Durham. His works in DAM IN VENICE include Gold Lame and Great Britain From A Wheelchair.

Image credit, Andy Barker

Image descriptions:

Banner image. Standing flush to a large brick wall and angled upwards, a large neon sign in the form of a cross fills the wall above. In pink squiggly letters across the middle and down the centre read Raspberry Ripple.

1. Facing a large brick wall, a neon artwork glowing in a soft purple hangs on the wall above two large scale drawings pasted to the bricks. The neon artwork is in the shape of a cross with the word 'Ripple' squiggled across the middle, and 'Raspberry' down the central pillar.

2. In a large exhibition space with pillars and high ceilings, neon signs, sculptures, videos and paintings fill various corners of the space. Central to the image, a person stands wearing headphones whilst watching a film displayed in a cardboard installation.

3. In a large exhibition space, central to the image is a large glass vitrine filled with various small objects. A person stands on the right peering into it. Hung on the back wall is a large banner in blue, yellow, red and green that reads 'Crip Arte Spazio. The disability arts movement in Venice. DAM in Venice'. Starting on the left wall and bleeding into the floor under the vitrine, are large scale prints resembling camera reels, containing photographs of various public events.

4. Taken side on from a wall of the exhibition, the right hand wall is filled with various large scale colour paintings on people in various settings. To the left, at the end of the wall in the distance, are two sculptures. A large free-standing sculpture in colourful patterns and a purple neon sign in the form of a cross on the wall behind.