Click on the website URL to enter the virtual gallery showing Luminous, the latest exhibition by the Shadowlight Artists. The Shadowlight Artists are a group of seven artists with learning disabilities based in Oxfordshire and supported by arts charity Film Oxford: Wendy Belcher, Tom Breach, Mark Hemsworth, Russell Highsmith, Richard Hunt, Lucy Skuce and Danny Smith. The Shadowlight Artists’ films from the exhibition will also be screened at a special event on 5 December at 3pm at the Together! 2020 Disability Film Festival where they are regular contributors.
The exhibition is diverse in media and subjects, and features painting, photography, animation, dance, artist films and sculptural installation. The works explore ideas such as personal relationships with the landscape, bullying and historical portraiture. Other work draws on a huge range of emotions from joy to sorrow, humour to exasperation. All of the work represents honest responses to the day-to-day world from this unique group of artists.
Commencing in late summer 2019, Luminous has been defined by the lockdown, as the Shadowlight Artists, freelance professionals and Film Oxford were forced to find new and innovative ways to work collaboratively at a distance. They liaised with the artists’ family members and their support and care organisations to draw up individual plans, so that the group’s production work could continue during the pandemic.
The body of work presented in the exhibition does not engage with the COVID-19 crisis directly, but it is influenced by it due to the radically different working methods used to create the show. The enforced experiment in distanced artistic collaboration has opened up new possibilities for the future activities of the group, offering a pathway towards artistic collaborations not limited by geographical separation, and towards a greater potential for inclusion for Disabled artists if given sufficient resources.
Some of the works will also be exhibited in two physical galleries in Oxford in early December, Modern Art Oxford and Arts at the Old Fire Station, dependent on lockdown conditions.