Artist Zoe Milner has been awarded the D/deaf, disabled or neurodivergent artists bursary as part of City Arts’ RESIDENCE project. Zoe was for selected the bursary by a panel of disabled creatives.
For her bursary project, Zoe will be in residence at City Arts. She will create a conceptual installation artwork inspired by her experience as a deaf person. The work will combine typography with imagery from BSL, a gestural language. Zoe hopes to inspire the deaf community, and other disabled people, to express pride in their special identity.
I feel deaf representation is import and this bursary gives me an opportunity to raise awareness. It is important people understand our perspective: the discrimination and audism deaf society faces. I want to expose some of the things people don’t know about my community: deaf education, the history of sign language. I’d like people to learn what deaf culture looks like.
About the artist
Zoe Milner is an artist and activist. She is currently studying for an undergraduate degree at Nottingham Trent University. She was born profoundly deaf, to a hearing family. Her family learnt British Sign Language, so they could to communicate with her throughout childhood. Having struggled for two years in mainstream primary schools, she moved to a deaf school. She has failed GCSE English language three-times. This is despite high achievement in other subjects. Through her practice she seeks to address the struggle she, and most other profoundly deaf people, have with writing and reading English. She does this whilst celebrating the power, beauty and freedom of sign language.
Meet the Panel
Each RESIDENCE bursary recipient was selected by a panel representing members of community it supports. Zoe Milner’s was awarded by a panel of D/deaf, disabled or neurodivergent artists.
Max is a BSL interpreter, access consultant and trainer. They work in the arts and beyond. As a queer, disabled and autistic person, they are passionate about community work around intersecting identities.
Nikki is a Theatre Designer and Maker specialising in Puppetry. Since graduating in Theatre Design, Nikki has worked at the forefront of disabled-led theatre-making. She works primarily in Children’s Theatre, including outreach and engagement. She has produced her own show, What Happened to You?, which toured festivals UK-wide in 2021.
At 19, Rachel volunteered at Nottingham Playhouse, running workshops and shadowing other artists. She completed the Playhouse’s Young Regional Directors Theatre Course. Rachel has worked for Egg Box Theatre, as an actor and disability consultant. She enjoys making theatre as accessible as possible, without making it a big deal.
Rowan currently works as a digital content producer for Remark. He oversees their in-vision signing, transcripts and subtitles, to ensure ease of access. This supports people from ranging from D/deaf to hard of hearing. He has also worked in many theatres.
Laura has worked as an artist facilitating arts workshops. She has performed nationally in an integrated dance company. She has trained staff and volunteers in arts facilitation and Disability Equality. Graduating with a BA Hons at Nottingham Trent University in Theatre Design, her career has since included Development Officer, Project Manager, and Artistic Director of three voluntary arts organisations. She is currently the Artist Development Manager at Graeae Theatre.