Over the past 10 years, artists have been involved in a series of projects, designed to learn from people with complex learning disabilities.  Its taken time to work out the best way to involve, given the severity of people disabilities.  Artists working on the programme, havedevised ways of working which unearth very interesting ways of being.  Suddenly the person thought to have no ability to learn can do many different things, the trigger being that it has to be on their terms based on what interests them.  The tiniest response has taken us on epic journeys. Here are some of them.

Benefit sanctions are punishing disabled people for the sake of it (3/22/2018) - By Frances Ryan for the Guardian Benefit sanctions are punishing disabled people for the sake of it Frances Ryan The government’s cruel rhetoric is that with enough ‘tough love’, people too ill to get out of bed can hold down a job. Sanctions don’t work Four years ago, I wrote about the death of David... Continue Reading →
Old School Ideas (1/1/2018) - We asked Old School Fabricators to work with artists Laura Aldridge and Laura Spring and design a space within a Day Centre for people with profound Learning Disabilities.  Her are their ideas…..old-school-ideas
Design for a screen – Charlotte Podger (12/1/2016) - Charlotte has worked with Artlink over the past few years, in particularly on the Sensory Workshops at Cherry Road.  We asked her, given her knowledge of the individuals, to design a space for people with profound learning disabilities.  Here is what she designed…..
Exchange of Method talks at the Collective Gallery (1/28/2016) - By Steve Hollingsworth  Where Art can inhabit a space outside of the gallery, other things become possible. I’m interested in testing myself in other contexts (which is what Artlink has done) I’m a fine-artist based in a music school, as a non-musician or an un-musician. The Conservatoire is a space of virtuosity, it is a... Continue Reading →
SENSORIUM (10/12/2015) -   At first Ben couldn’t use the sensorium. Steve persevered. Its taken time. Ben learned and this happened. ……… Sometimes there are moments when you know that the work is going in the right direction and that the artists are getting it absolutely spot on
Sensorium.. Excerpt from Light2015 blog (7/16/2015) -     Steve Holligsworth recently wrote for light2015 a blog for the international year of light 2015.  It’s all about how art and science can work together to make a difference.  Read it  here….. Excerpt from the text I was tasked with making a bespoke artwork for an individual with profound disabilities, Ben. Ben has... Continue Reading →
The Project – Collaborative Environments (7/15/2015) - Artists Laura Aldridge and Laura Spring invite artists and designers to re-think day centre environments as theatrical/carnival/fairground spaces, looking at colour pattern, the design of a room from the perspective of someone with profound learning disabilities. This project is all about imagination, thinking creatively to create a series of ‘sets’ in which people can perform,... Continue Reading →
Sensorium  (6/24/2015) - Artist, Steve Hollingsworth  explores the tension between sound, light and time, and its influence by the profoundly different subjectivities he encounters. The Sensorium, exists in basic form, a rough sketch to be used by two people only. Steve will develop the sensorium over the next two years, creating an artwork that can be used by... Continue Reading →
Sensorium – impact of my practice on the individual and care staff  (5/22/2015) -    Steve Hollingsworth: The  impact  of  art  in  this  context  (art  as  relationships  and  new  perceptible  forms-light,  sound  and performance)  is  enormous  in  this  area. The  art  is  really  in  the  relationships  that  form  over  time  between  the disabled,  their  carers,  parents  and  other  professionals  (as  well  as  new  physical  and  tangible  art  objects)  Opinions change... Continue Reading →
What has working with people with profound learning disabilities brought to your practice?  (5/20/2015) -      STEVE  HOLLINGSWORTH:  Working  as  artist  has  enriched,  invigorated  and  expanded  the  potential  of  my practice.  My  ideas  were  forced  to  adapt  and  change  in  order  to  communicate  with  the  radically  different subjectivities  I  encounter  in  my  work.  It  enabled  collaborations  to  occur  where  new  ideas  arose  through discussion  (with  other  artists)  and  constantly  working... Continue Reading →
Working within the thresholds of perception (2/5/2015) - Dr. Gordon Dutton As a clinician who has spent many years working with children and adults with impaired vision, often associated with developmental and learning disorders, this contributor’s view is that it is important  to bring about a sense of pleasure and fulfilment through the medium of artistic expression, for all those whose normal is... Continue Reading →
Notes from workshop to inspire careworkers (2/2/2015) - The notes below are from a workshop by artist Steve Hollingsworth exploring ways in which staff could be inspired to  inform the progression of Nathalies (the person they cared for) project. I blind folded both of them and gave them a large sheet of paper to write words down as they listened, so they wrote... Continue Reading →
Accumulating the detail behind the artwork (1/29/2015) -   ​Steve Hollingsworth works closely with the individual, watching their ​smallest response as a way of informing his artworks. He enters a world ​in which colour becomes sound and sound becomes colour, where light ​becomes an object to be touched, where simple vibration and sound are ​all consuming, where seemingly routine events become fascinating. ​These observations... Continue Reading →
6th International Arcintex 2015 Research Symposium (1/19/2015) - Steve Hollingsworth has been invited to present some of the work and thinking he does with Artlink at the 6th International Arcintex 2015 Research Symposium held at Nottingham Trent University in February. Under the conference title of ‘Narratives in an Internet of Soft Things’ it will entail 3 days of talks and workshops. Steve is... Continue Reading →
Sound work – Steve Hollingsworth (1/8/2015) - Yes! a new departure into re-thinking an interface for Nathalie.  She seemed (to us) to get the joystick. We weren’t too sure she could use it.  We kept working with her and then suddenly she can do it! Result!
Update on Steves work (11/14/2014) - My overall aim is to refine ideas concerning the developing immersive sensorium (and what is most appropriate for Ben and Nathalie) and also to be ambitious as possible in moving toward a further potential version of the Sensorium. To do this I need to learn more from Ben and Nathalie, this will come from the... Continue Reading →
A bespoke sensorium for Ben (11/12/2014) - This is a prototype device that comprises of an umbrella projection screen, a video projector, small speakers and amplifier, a colour changing LED strip and a specially designed interface. Bens sensory preferences are combinations of Sound and Light (high pitched sound seems to be favoured) The planetarium is a computer based system that Ben has... Continue Reading →
Immersive workshops (8/5/2014) -   In their workshops Steve Hollingsworth and Jim Colqhoun engage people through an immersive aural/visual environment, that serves to highlight the tiniest of sounds, attenuating perception through chorus of spoken, shrieked, whispered and disjointed wordplay. The artists strive to create a zone where perception is subtly shifted and where people are gently eased away from... Continue Reading →
Drawings for sensory planetarium – Steve Hollingsworth (6/2/2014) - Steve makes sketches of the ideas emerging from his workshops with people. He has pages and pages of them. The sketches below are the beginnings of his ideas for the Sensorium.
Marks piano by Steve Hollingsworth (2/10/2013) - The idea was to use a piano as a base for allowing Mark to access new aural experiences by encouraging him to use switches. The piano was used due to marks familiarity with it, its indestructibility and also as an instrument that he could play. The switches allow mark access to familiar voices, dogs barking,... Continue Reading →
The beginning of Marks Piano and the development of the Ideas Team (6/11/2012) - Artist, Steve Hollingsworth work with Mark and the  Ideas team consisting of his mother, care workers, psychologist, OT’s and physios.  The group agreed to the following aim: to encourage deliberate movements and intentionality and  increase his motor skills.  This was the first of many group meetings.
An approach (9/29/2011) - This is dependent on who you are working with, what they are interested in and how they respond but it gives you an idea of an approach. This is a section of a recent posting by Steve Hollingsworth, describing how he breaks down a workshop approach……. Bearing in mind the reactions and structure of last... Continue Reading →

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