Artist with Asperger’s hopes to change attitude to disability

Picture: Pierandrea Guarnieri

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AN ARTIST who has Asperger’s syndrome has been awarded a fellowship by the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts (RSA).

Jon Adams, artist in residence at the University of Portsmouth, joins a club of RSA fellows who inspire innovative thinking, enable positive change and support each other to tackle the challenges of the 21st century.

Jon was nominated for his work and commitment to raising awareness about Aspergers syndrome, which he has dealt with his entire life.

He said: ‘All my life I’ve felt like an outsider so it means a great deal to be part of a network of like-minded people.

‘At school I was told I would never amount to anything and I’ve spent the rest of my life proving them wrong. The recognition by the RSA is something I can be truly proud of.’

Jon’s latest art project, Look About, is part of the Cultural Olympiad – a cultural celebration of the history of the modern Olympic and Paralympic Movements.

It is a two-year creative research initiative which encourages people, especially deaf and disabled people and those from creative, arts and cultural organisations, to document their experiences of London 2012.

He added: ‘I hope the project will spark a cultural shift in attitude towards disability in the arts.’