How it worked

How the project developed

Everyone started with a scoping and planning phase, which included a consultation seminar in July 2010. The Everyone seminar was an opportunity to explore access and disability equality in galleries and the visual arts in Scotland. Participants took part in conversation and consultation with gallery education peers, disabled artists and other stakeholders to inform the support offered in the second phase of the Everyone project. In September 2010 galleries were invited to submit proposals to take part in Everyone.

Four projects were selected by the Everyone panel in November 2010:

  • The Dundee Cluster (Dundee Contemporary Arts and Generator Projects) who supported disabled artists in residence at DCA.
  • The East Lothian Cluster (Peter Potter Gallery and Sanderson’s Wynd School) who worked with an artist in residence and a group of children with complex disabilities.
  • The Edinburgh Cluster (The Fruitmarket Gallery, Talbot Rice Gallery and Artlink Edinburgh and Lothians) who ran a series of events and research visits aimed at engaging British Sign Language, (BSL), users with visual art.
  • The Glasgow Cluster (organisations based in Trongate 103) who ran a series of residencies and project sharing sessions. Key partners were Projectability and Glasgow Print Studio.

Two training and development sessions for participating galleries and organisations took place at the start of the project phase in early 2011. The first session offered disability equality training and aimed to impact on galleries longer term disability equality plans. The second session focused on project specific development and evaluation plans. Participating galleries shared their learning with each other at an evaluation session in November 2011.

Participating galleries and organisations:

Developing Disability Equality Action Plans

Longer term sustainable organisational changes were key measures of success for the Everyone project and developing robust and practical, disability equality action plans was embedded into all project activity. The participating galleries and organisations were encouraged to see their project activity as a route to developing sustainable good practice.

At the start of the Everyone project, the galleries involved were encouraged to revisit their disability equality policies and at the close of the project, all of the organisations had made some progress and had considered practical ways to make meaningful changes. At the close of the funding period the long-term impact of the project is difficult to predict but all four projects are committed to continuing their work in this area. Three of the projects continued activity after the end of Everyone. engage Scotland hopes to revisit the galleries and organisations involved in future to review the impact of the Everyone project.

Working in clusters

All of the four projects were structured as clusters, comprising at least one gallery and at least one external organisation. All of the projects found working in a cluster challenging. The clusters worked best where the cluster members went in as equals and worked together in a supportive way towards a clear end goal.

Peer learning between clusters happened through training and events, and where project leads made contact with one another to discuss ideas and share learning. Additionally there was some successful partnership working outwith the clusters, both between Everyone project participants and with external organisations.

The potential for sustainable partnerships and an ongoing learning community is a key success of the Everyone project.

Working with an advisory panel

The Everyone panel which included disabled people with relevant skills and experience was a key success of the Everyone project. Strong ongoing support was provided by engage Scotland via the Everyone project lead, Mairi Taylor.

At a strategic level, the support from the Everyone panel was essential in driving the project forward in a focused and sustainable direction. At an operational level, the panel provided specialist advice and support as required which contributed to the efficiency and outcomes of project activity.

The Everyone panel was keen to see the involvement of disabled artists within the activity of the four projects, and this happened to a limited degree. At the galleries, disabled participants in the projects played an active role in providing feedback on the process and progress of the project through action learning.