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Colin Hambrook established Disability Arts Online in 2004. Since then he has been editing and maintaining the journal and its social media outlets. In his blog he comments on aspects of stuff going in within Disability Arts and the specific arts programmes Dao is engaged with.. as well being known to vent the occasional rant.

Colin Hambrook puts on a man suit

28 July 2010


black and white drawing of a young man frowning

I am pleased the way that the blog section of DAO has taken off in the past few months. Having the opportunity to publish work continues to be a pleasure that I am very grateful for. When you've grown up with the idea that you need fixing in some way it makes parenthood even more of a challenge... Man Suit This baby place remembers you, newly made a smile, perhaps imagined, and a way of holding the little finger outwards, as if grasping an invisible cup of tea at a garden party. All-consuming,...

Comments: 0

'Dreams of the Absurd...'

19 July 2010


black and white surreal drawing with a clock

In the 1990s I put together a visual arts exhibition called 'Dreams of the Absurd' which got shown in various galleries in the UK and abroad. It was an extension of a series of large-scale paintings, prints and writing about experience of mental health issues. During research I did whilst still at college I connected the work with the representation of 'madness' within the history of art. I've been trying to get back into making and showing my own work since the those...

Comments: 3

A poem on experience of ECT from Colin Hambrook

14 July 2010


drawing of a figure held in thought by representations of demonic forces

I try hard when writing poetry… sometimes too hard. Scanning this drawing into the computer somehow gave it an even more oppressive feel. Playing with the contrast made it that much starker. The drawing wasn't made for the poem, but the mood of the drawing sums up some of the suppressed rage in this poem. There is a central figure in battle with demons and strange fizzing machines rising above him. So many of my drawings express different aspects of psychosis... In many ways my life has...

Comments: 8

Colin Hambrook gets inspired by film-maker Jean Cocteau

6 July 2010


I've been thinking of posting some of my poetry for some time now. Poetry is one of those things I do to keep going when life gets tough. I love Jean Cocteau's 1949 retelling of the story of Orpheus. I was born in the underworld. So-called schizophrenia came knocking on the door when I was still in the womb. Going through mirrors, down holes, into the labyrinth, is something I'm overly familiar with. It's defined who I am. It seems to me that Jean Cocteau understood something about being...

Comments: 10