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‘Exquisite Familiar’ Artist: Dan Withey

Dan is one of our ‘The Exquisite Familiar’ artists. ‘The Exquisite Familiar’ is an Access2Arts project that sees a group of eleven South Australian disabled artists, both emerging and established, working together through multiple workshops and mediums to create powerful collaborative art. This art is then exhibited at the Art Gallery of South Australia and MOD., placing disabled artists firmly and proudly in prominent institutions.

What was your inspiration for your uncanny creature?

I was inspired by the tin man from the wizard of OZ

As he’s got thick skin which is very much like me throughout Life and as an artist you have to develop thick skin and be able to deal with rejection strangely enough my child hood at school where I was the stupid kid most of the time gave me a lot of practice

So that now not much bothers me I just keep marching forward nothing will stop me

On the Inside though I’m a big softyA black and white illustration of a tin-man like creature.

Tell me a bit about yourself and your art practice.

I was born in 1986 in Birmingham, England, and migrated to South Australia in 2004 with my mom dad and two brothers Where I studied a Bachelor of visual communication at the university of south Australia and since leaving in 2007 I have worked as a visual artist I mostly paint but I also recently started to make lino prints I have also done some mural work around Adelaide to

Where do you find inspiration?

Everywhere all the time really Idea’s just come to me out of nowhere I’m a bit of a Day dreamer It drives my girlfriend crazy I’m always floating off Day dreaming that’s where most of my Ideas come from

How does your disability influence your craft?

In my mind Dyslexia really is a creative super power I have found over the years as you see the world slightly differently but it comes with its downsides mostly being a terrible at righting and spelling

What food, drink, or song inspires you?

Im a big Fan of Johnny cash, I love the Narrative elements within his lyrics

But it mostly depends on the mood I’m in If I need to get some work done listening to the prodigy or Metal gets me working

Read more of The Exquisite Familiar artist interviews here.