The Mind: Enter the Labyrinth is a fascinating exhibition at the Melbourne Museum. It is all about the science of the mind. The exhibition explores psychology and psychiatry as well as mental illnesses. Its exhibits include more than just static displays. There are videos to watch and tests to take. Visitors can also take a perception-altering walk through the Ames room. Museum entry is free for those with concessions and just $12 for adults. There is no extra cost to visit The Mind: Enter the Labyrinth exhibition.
People with a disability need to have a say. We need to be heard about the National Disability Insurance Scheme. We need to be heard about changes to the Disability Support Pension. One way to be heard is by the use of advocates. But their advocacy needs to be effective. To ensure it is effective, advocates and people with disabilities should meet and exchange ideas. Such a meeting is happening in Melbourne on 4 August. The meeting is called the Strengthening Disability Advocacy Conference, Champions of Change.
How are people who are blind able to dance? The Victorian Blind Square Dancing group might have the answer. Those who can't see are taught to dance by feeling how others move. They are also told the moves to make. Dancers call to each other to let others know where they are. A caller announces moves through loudspeakers. Sometimes dancers may run into each other. It is not always easy for someone who is blind to turn back to just the right spot. The dancers enjoy each other's company and find the dancing good exercise.
close up of someone playing electric guitar + drummer
The show is in full swing.
I went to Strumarama. It is a live music show. The performers have emotional and mental health issues. They have all taken part in song writing classes. The classes are run in South Melbourne, Heidelberg and Drouin. The show is put together by Wild@heART Community Arts. The performers sang about love, hurt and their own mental health. Many people went to the show. The audience and the singers had fun. The next Strumarama show is in December.
It can sometimes take a lot of planning to find where you can go out when you have a disability. But a new tool will now make this planning easier. It is a free app called Out & About. It can be used on an iPhone or iPad. Out & About finds accessible venues and events in Melbourne for people with a disability. It lists accessible places such as parks, beaches, restaurants and cafes. You can review and rate the accessibility of the places you visit. You can also add accessible venues. The app is by Villa Maria.
Arts Access - Michelle Waterfall and Richard Smythe
Artists with disabilities will keep making art, whether they are "tolerated" or not.
Earlier this year, former Minister for the Arts Simon Crean annoyed disability advocates by encouraging a culture of tolerance towards artists with disabilities. As a result, Arts Access Victoria organised a forum to discuss moving beyond tolerance . Artists and representatives from arts organisations attended the forum. Many ideas were raised. These included issues of access, opportunity and funding. Several speakers thought more diverse representation on funding bodies would cause cultural change. The forum did not solve any problems. But the people who attended it will still find ways to make art accessible and meaningful.
The Emerging Writer's Festival was the first time having Deaf speakers at a book launch in Australia.
Ever been to a writer's festival launch where there was a Deaf MC and Deaf guest speakers? This year the organisers of the Emerging Writer's Festival actually made it happen for the very first time. There was a Deaf writer who contributed an article to The Emerging Writer book which was launched during the event.
Alex and Warrick Grime - A father and daughter team.
The annual CyclePower tour is on again. The ride provides funds for sport and recreation for those with disabilities. It is a daring challenge. Some people use hand-cycles. Peter Hyden says he knows it's not going to be a skip around the park. But he is looking forward to learning from others. Alex Grime is also participating for the first time. She is looking forward to the physical challenge. There are many benefits to be gained. The CyclePower tour showcases what can be achieved despite disability.
The crown of a princess, buried at Tillya Tepe in northern Afghanistan.
The latest exhibition at the Melbourne Museum is Afghanistan, Hidden Treasures from the National Museum, Kabul . The treasures are from four of the 1,500 archeological sites in Afghanistan. They show a rich mix of cultures from Greek, Roman, Indian, Chinese and local Bactrian, going back over 4,000 years. The treasures, thought lost or destroyed were re-discovered in 2003, safely hidden. For over 30 years, the country has been in chaos. Art such as these treasures could be at risk again in the future.
After Hours Events gives people with an intellectual or learning disability the chance to have fun and socialise
At the After Hours Events held at Oakleigh Bowls Club, participants with intellectual and other learning disabilities at can enjoy partner dancing, singing and learn social and communication skills. Best of all, they can have great conversations and make new friends. Donna Gabriel uses her many talents to run this exciting program. Partner dancing is a favourite activity, which involves spending a short amount of time with everyone, using the brain with physical movement, and getting fit and active.