Four Coventry artists included in latest awards from Unlimited

Vijay is standing outside with arms in the air holding a large pink and yellow scarf around him and staring off into the sky. Photo by Holly Revel

34 exceptional UK disabled artists and companies, including four artists from Coventry, receive over £715K in funding from Unlimited to develop their work

The five awards have been made in partnership with Coventry City of Culture Trust.

Three of the local artists have received the Emerging Artist awards; Ayesha Jones, Hayley Williams-Hindle and Jack Foulks. And the other artist, Al Davison has received a Strategic Commission award, along with Raquel Meseguer Zafe, a national artist working with Coventry City of Culture Trust.

The Unlimited arts commissioning programme is delivered by Shape Arts and Artsadmin. It supports disabled artists to create and present their work across all art forms.

Artists who will receive funding this year work in the artforms of music, theatre, combined arts, dance visual and live art, with this round, also supporting opera, literature, zines, technology and work for young audiences and in rural locations. The selection criteria requires that projects are disability-led and show quality, innovation and ambition to develop new artistic work. Artists funded live throughout the UK, resident in Scotland, Wales and England.

Unlimited's main aim is to commission disabled artists and companies to make exceptional
work. In this round, 468 artists applied and 77 artists were shortlisted.

The awards in statistics:

  • 34 awards with 17 of these awards in collaboration with partners.
  • 11 Emerging awards, 13 Research and Development awards, 8 Main Commission
    awards and two strategic commissions have been awarded.
  • £717,490 awarded.
  • 67% of artists have never been funded by Unlimited before.
  • 32% of awards are going to artists of colour.
  • 24% of funds awarded are going to Midlands-based artists, 21% to those based in London, 18% South West England, 12% North of England, 10% Wales, 9%
    Scotland and 6% South East England.
  • 46% of funds are going to combined arts, 15% theatre, 11% visual arts, 7%
    literature, 5% music, 3% dance, 13% other (including music theatre,
    environmental sound art).

One of Unlimited’s core aims is to embed disabled artists within the cultural sector, and we do this through our partnerships. Unlimited is funded by Arts Council England, Arts Council of Wales and  Creative Scotland and, for this commissions round, we have partnered with Artsadmin, Bagri Foundation, Coventry City of Culture Trust, Farnham Maltings, Museum of the Home, Sage Gateshead, Southbank Centre, Pentabus, Polka Theatre, The Art House and Wellcome Collection. Unlimited also partnered with the David Toole OBE Bursary to support a project by an emerging dancer, received this round by Laura Fisher.

Explore all the supported commissions on Unlimited’s website.


Main Awards

  • Cheryl Beer, Wales, Environmental sound artist
  • Christopher Samuel, England: Midlands, Visual arts, Wellcome Collection Partner Award
  • Dolly Sen, England: South East, Combined arts, Wellcome Collection Partner Award
  • Jack Dean & Company, England: South West, Music, Farnham Maltings Partner Award
  • Mish Weaver, England: South West, Combined arts, Artsadmin Partner Award
  • Mind the Gap & Nickie Miles-Wildin, England: North, Theatre
  • Rachael Young, England: Midlands, Combined arts
  • Tom Wentworth, England: London, Theatre, Pentabus Partner Award

Research & Development Awards

  • Aby Watson, Scotland, Dance
  • Ailís Ní Ríain, England: North, Music, Sage Gateshead Partner Award
  • Bobby Baker‚ Daily Life Ltd. England: London, Combined arts, Museum of the Home
    Partner Award
  • Clara Weale, Scotland, Combined arts
  • Ellen Renton, Scotland, Literature
  • Estabrak, England: London, Combined arts, Bagri Foundation Partner Award
  • Gareth Churchill, Wales, Music
  • John Kelly, England: London, Music, Sage Gateshead Partner Award
  • Joseph Wilk, England: South West, Combined arts, Southbank Centre Partner Award
  • Lilac Yosiphon, England: London, Theatre, Polka Theatre Partner Award
  • Rhine Bernardino, England: London, Combined arts, Bagri Foundation Partner Award
  • Touretteshero, England: London, Theatre
  • Vijay Patel, England: London, Theatre

Emerging Artists Commissions

  • Ayesha Jones, England: Midlands, Combined arts, Coventry City of Culture Trust
    Partner Award
  • Clare and Lesley Disabled Dance Artists, Scotland, Combined arts
  • Emily Beaney, Scotland, Combined arts
  • Hayley Williams-Hindle, England: Midlands, Visual arts, Coventry City of Culture Trust
    Partner Award
  • Jack Foulks, England: Midlands, Visual arts, Coventry City of Culture Trust Partner
  • Jameisha Prescod, England: London, Visual arts
  • Laura Fisher, Scotland, Dance
  • Lilith Cooper, Scotland, Combined arts
  • Mohammed Hassun Zafar, England: North, Combined arts, The Art House Partner Award
  • Sam Metz, England: North, Combined arts
  • Stephanie Back, Wales, Theatre

Strategic Commission

  • Al Davison, England: Midlands, Visual arts, with Coventry City of Culture Trust
  • Raquel Meseguer Zafe, England: South West, Combined arts with Coventry City of Culture Trust


IMAGE CREDIT: Vijay Patel. Photo by Holly Revel