ONLINE EXHIBITION | Celebrating World Autism Awareness Week | 30 March – 5 April 2020

This week is World Autism Awareness Week. Taking place annually, it aims to raise awareness of and respect for autism.


The current Coronavirus situation is especially challenging for people with autism, who fear change and often feel isolated under normal circumstances, let alone now.


At Venture Arts we want to use this week to celebrate the amazing art created by our artists with autism. Who better to curate a ‘mini-exhibition’ of some of her favourite works than our Public Engagement Assistant and autism advocate, Amber Okpa-Stother.


Here’s why she picked the pieces shown in the gallery above (left to right):


Liam Ashworth, ‘Pizza’, 2018, Light Drawing Digital Photography

I like the pizza image because it’s unusual the way the photo has been taken and the writing saying Pizza. I think this image is really interesting and I think people will really like seeing the image.


Laura Wild, Untitled, 2018, Embroidery

What I like about Laura’s flowers picture is the bees that she has put on the piece of fabric as it reminds me of the Manchester Bee. It makes me think of spring with the flowers in it, which is suitable for this time of year.


Jennie Franklin, ‘Naughty Pingu’, 2017, Ink on Paper

What I like about Jennie Franklin’s Pingu image is it reminds me of the TV programme back in the day which I used to watch when I was younger. I like the image and I know Jennie has put a lot of time and effort in drawing the image.


Lou Nicole, ‘Rubber Duck’, 2016, Textile

I like Louise’s pink rubber duck because it’s not normal to see pink ducks and I think it really stands out! Another reason why I like the image is because I can see that Louise has taken her time to do the pink rubber duck. It represents Louise really well too as her favourite colour is pink.


Terry Williams, ‘Planes’, 2019, Oil Pastel and Acrylic on Canvas

The reason why I like Terry’s drawing is because I like the sunshine on the picture as it makes a happy picture and it’s unusual and really stands out with the orange.


Luca Agathogli, ‘Park Building’, 2018, Photography and Illustration 

I like the range of different colours that Luca has used in the buildings. I also can tell that Luca has put a lot of time and effort in creating the image and deciding what colours to use.


Leslie Thompson, ‘The Amur Tiger’, 2018, Colour Illustration

I like Leslie’s Tiger because I think it looks like a real tiger. I know he puts a lot time and concentration into doing his drawings and you can see the detail that he has drawn into his tiger.


Sally Hirst, 'Rainbow', 2020, original drawing

To help us celebrate, download and colour-in Sally Hirst’s ‘Rainbow’ colouring sheet. Have fun!


Amber has been busy! She’s also prepared her ‘Top tips for people with learning disabilities and autism during the Covid-19 situation’. You can view and download here.


A final thought from Amber: ‘’Pass on your art skills to others and be proud of them when you do.”


During the Coronavirus situation we’re doing everything we can to stay connected to our participants and provide continuity to their artistic practice while our studio is closed (read more here). We understand it’s a difficult time for everybody; if you can, please help us to reach them with the materials and resources that they need through our Emergency Fund.