Programming -
The Arts Access Method

arts access gallery

"One of the founding principles of Arts Access is that of 'No Preconceptions.' Part of that is allowing clients to express ideas and thoughts in their own way, regardless of societal convention." --Keith Garletts, Arts Access Facilitator Manager

The Arts Access program equips participants with systems that enable them to create art on their own terms. Professional artists, who act as facilitators, assist clients with the art-making process using tools that are based on verbal, visual and perceptual communication. Clearly-defined chart and menu systems help to establish all aspects of communication between the facilitator and the participant.

These systems and tools allow the participant to inform the facilitator of his or her decisions regarding the artwork. The facilitator is not a collaborator. He or she is a neutral party who executes the technical aspects of the art under the clear direction and supervision of the participant. Each facilitator strictly adheres to the four principles of the Arts Access program.

Freedom of Choice: Each work of art is the culmination of a series of choices made by the participant artist. Any choice or decision that can alter or affect the outcome of the work is the clients' choice to make.

Artist Assisting Artist: The arts access program and the facilitation process is build around mutual respect and trust between two artists. The client artist is recognized as the driving force in the process and as such, deserves the same respect the professional facilitator would show any of their peers or contemporaries.

Neutrality: The facilitator must remain creatively neutral in all dealings with participants of the program. This is to ensure that every piece of art created in the Arts Access Program is a perfect execution of the participants' vision and direction and remains free from purposeful or indirect influence by the facilitator.

No Preconceptions: The facilitator makes no assumptions or preconceptions based on the participant's disability. The facilitator never assumes what a participant can or cannot do. Our belief is that regardless of levels of cognition, every participant has the capability to create fine art and to use it as a means of self-expression.