North Antrim based painter Maurice Orr has spoken about his life-changing encounter with the Arts.
The internationally-recognised artist, whose paintings are exhibited and included in public and private collections around the world, is also disabled, with an ‘invisible’ physical impairment, following illness and life-changing surgery.
The Arts Council of Northern Ireland has just published a new piece of research into the benefits of funding awards for deaf and disabled artists like Maurice, who claims this award for him was life-changing.
In the case study Maurice shares his experiences in a candid interview with author Una Lynch and talks about the benefits of the Individual Disabled/Deaf Artists funding awards (iDA) managed by the University of Atypical. He discusses how his disability affects his day-to-day life, the support he has received through the iDA Awards in building his career as an artist, and the transformative impact this support has had on improving his sense of health and wellbeing.
A life-changing encounter with the arts came in 2002, in the form of an art bursary from the University of Atypical (formerly the Arts & Disability Forum), which he applied for under duress from his wife Jane, and which he now credits as having activated the artistic career that turned his life around.
The iDA Awards support disabled and deaf artists, writers, performers and musicians with grants of up-to £5,000 towards developing artistic careers.
To find out more about Maurice’s case study visit www.artscouncil-ni.org