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The Royal College of Physicians and Shape win prestigious award for ‘inspired’ exhibition

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Tony Heaton from Shape and Bridget Telfer from RCP collect their award

This week, the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) and arts organisation Shape have won an Ability Media International award for helping to build a more inclusive world for disabled people with their exhibition of portraits, Re-framing disability: portraits from the Royal College of Physicians.

Heralded by the international panel of judges as both ‘inspired’ and ‘challenging’, Re-framing disability won the ‘Visual Arts Award 2011’. The result of a partnership between the RCP and Shape, which works to improve access to culture for disabled people, the exhibition explores rare portraits of disabled people from the 17th to 19th centuries, uncovers their hidden histories and looks at their impact today through contemporary responses from 27 disabled participants across the UK.

Bridget Telfer, RCP project curator, explained, “We are delighted to receive this award in recognition of the exhibition. One of the aims of this project was to reduce the cultural invisibility of disabled people in traditional museum displays and to empower disabled people to take control of their own histories and identities. It is the 27 disabled participants that I really need to thank for all their hard work. Only through their voices and views may we hope – in the words of one participant – to encourage an ‘acceptance and celebration of difference’”.

The AMI awards, created by Leonard Cheshire Disability in 2009, identify outstanding creative projects that encourage a more inclusive world for disabled people.

Re-framing disability was supported by a Wellcome Trust People Award and the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA) Documentation Improvement Grant.

The exhibition is touring to venues across the UK throughout 2011/12. It is currently on display at the University of Leicester’s School of Museum Studies until the end of January 2012. Further details about touring venues and the online exhibition can be found on the RCP website, or on Welcome Collection’s blog.

 


Filed under: External News, Science Art, Wellcome Collection Tagged: AMI Awards, Re-framing disability, Royal College of Physicians

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