An original exhibition is currently on show in the metro station Botanique in Brussels: Chais’Art. The theme of the exhibition is the wheelchair as artistic icon, giving a new and amusing take on the subject. The artist is Cleon Angelo, himself a wheelchair user, working in collaboration with Benedict Gastout, graphic designer. The aim of the exhibition is to put the spotlight on the issue of accessibility for wheelchair users. Chais’Art has experimented with different variations of the international symbol for accessibility for wheelchair users. The images are humorous, but they are also surprising and thought provoking.
The chair is an art-form: it rolls on for us, it sticks with us, it bends over backwards to take us to the ends of the world, but we can only go to the places where the chair can pass. It is part of our difference… in search of recognition.
The art of the chair deserves to be known, to be honoured, tasted … The art of the chair announces, influences and denounces! Chais’Art is for disabled people who only want one thing: to take their place in society. Chais’Art is available on different themes: mobility, accessibility, Brussels, Europe, art, famous people … and is the brainchild of two artists who exhibit their work for the benefit of the association Autonomia asbl.
Cleon Angelo is active in the disability sector. He himself uses a wheelchair, and is managing director of disability organisation ANLH, also director of Access-A and Autonomia. Over thirty years he has acquired expertise and experience in the fields of accessibility, mobility, housing, technical aids and support for disabled people. When time permits, he is passionate about painting and drawing. Three years ago he came up the idea of creating the collection Chais’Art to express his commitment to disabled people’s rights in a humorous and artistic way.
Bénédicte Gastout is a well known painter and graphic artist in the art world in Brussels. Trained in graphic design at Academy ’75’ in Brussels, she has taken additional courses in comics, drawing and engraving. Throughout her design career, she has taken part in numerous group and solo exhibitions. For several years she worked for disability organisations, designing logos, pictograms, and website and communications graphics. Gastout has put her sensitivity and creativity into the project “Chais’Art”, synthesizing ideas and reducing them to their simplest expression.