“Snapshot” Selected for Shape Open 2013

So on Friday I got the rather lovely news that my piece “Snapshot” had been chosen as one of the selected pieces for this year’s Shape Open first to be exhibited at The Nunnery: Bow Arts 3rd Oct — 27th Oct and then toured at various galleries around the country afterwards.

This news fills me with such joy.  If I could jump (my illness means I am in a wheelchair) for joy I would!  It is so difficult being an artist anyway and when you are disabled, particularly when it is caused through an illness the walls being built up before you are so much higher and so being selected for such an exhibition is truly an honour.


The Shape Open was, well, open, to both disabled and non-disabled artists with the theme being disability reassessed.  You were entitled to submit two entries which examined disability from a different angle, noting the two sides to disability portrayed by the media:

1) the euphoria surrounding our paralympians and their amazing success last year, and

2) the way disability is portrayed through the media

It strikes me, as a disabled (albeit through illness) person that there are two ways we view disability.

Firstly as inspiring hero (but this is actually incredibly rare and only seems to happed at times of sporting prowess) and

Secondly as scrounging benefits cheat: this opinion, although completely untrue in its belief seems to be the prevailing one at the moment in the UK, and it is perpetuated by so-called “news” media and political rhetoric.

There is actually a third, which I have hitherto not mentioned and that is as gibbering incompetent.  Yes, people might not like to admit it but this does come into play a lot quite often by normally well-meaning individuals.  I have often been ignored in situations where I am the protagonist and my “able” husband referred to in my place.  I have also been questioned over why “someone like [me]” would need an MA by a particularly revolting woman at a mother and baby group I attended once (literally once).

My piece “snapshot” forms part of a larger series of images which can be viewed at badhofbauer.com and other places that questions the role of disability within familial contexts, you can find a more detailed explanation on the websites.


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