Michael Buckley’s work is influenced by his experience of brain dysfunction. He was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 2011 and now uses his personal circumstances as inspiration and sees it as an opportunity to collaborate with others. ‘I am working with the idea that my brain is now not me,’ he says.
Image Credit: Michael Buckley
Michael applied for a Development grant and received $12,950 in March 2015.
‘I chose the Disability Assessment Panel because I have an ABI (acquired brain injury). I felt I had the best chance of getting funding in this category.’
Michael was funded to travel to Hamburg in early August 2015 for a four week residency at the FRISE Gallery. ‘The residency provided research and exhibition opportunities for me. The last week included a cross-artform exhibition of works comprising visual arts, performance and sound/video installation with two other German artists.’
‘It was a socially engaged exhibition as it addressed the issue of disability and street art as a creative inspiration for contemporary practice. We exhibited works by myself, an artist with a degenerative brain disorder; Rohullah Kazimi, an Afghani refugee with an intellectual disability, and German street artist Patrick Farzi.
‘I think my application stood out because I had an invitation to exhibit from FRISE gallery. My street art graffiti style of painting on brown paper maybe has an interesting dynamic; this style of painting has been influenced by my ABI.’
Michael encourages artists and arts workers to talk to Australia Council staff before applying. ‘They were able to assist me with my enquiries and gave me a good overview and check list of things I needed to consider (such as support material) before applying. ‘The outcomes from the grant have been great. I have an art dealer now in Hamburg that sells my work.’
This is a remarkable story about a remarkable woman – a tenacious, determined and talented writer and performance maker, who also happens to have Down syndrome. Read more