Our vision is a society where everyone can create, access, engage, experience, and participate in excellent arts practice irrespective of age, finance, ability or health.
Prism Arts was established in 1987 by a group of five artists committed to developing opportunities for excluded people to participate in the arts.
For over 30 years Prism Arts has been developing and delivering arts projects which are accessible to everyone. We are based in Carlisle but works throughout Cumbria.
We predominantly work creating visual arts and theatre productions with people with additional learning needs, older people and younger people. Our visual art is showcased in exhibitions in galleries and public spaces and our productions are performed in theatres, schools and community spaces.
Prism Arts’ mission is to create opportunities for people facing barriers to engagement in the arts because of health, finance, age or disability; to realise their full creative potential through active participation in, and exploration of, the arts.
Our goal is to develop and create diverse artists, who discover their voice and then develop the confidence to use it. We believe in progression and development of all our people through the arts.
“The great thing about prism Arts is that they concentrate on my son’s abilities and not his disabilities” – parent of a member of Studio Theatre.
Studio Programme: We run 3 weekly creative arts programmes in Carlisle and one on the West Coast in visual arts and theatre for adults and young people.
We also run a weekly youth theatre project for children and young people with disabilities in Carlisle. These are ongoing programmes which give people to opportunity to progress in the arts.
We run many projects with partner organisations, such as Cumbria Wildlife Trust, University of Cumbria, Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery, Cumbria Museum of Military Life, as well as many schools throughout the county. These projects give us an opportunity to work with different groups of people exploring a particular subject.
Our studio programmes, youth theatre and projects are run by professional artists who work in partnership with the participants, facilitating them in all aspects of the creative process from research, to creating, to exhibiting or performing.
We are one of the Arts Council England’s National Portfolio Funded Organisations.
“National Portfolio Organisations are leaders in their areas, with a collective responsibility to protect and develop our national arts and cultural ecology.” – Arts Council England
Over a year Prism Arts runs on average 600 workshops which give 2,500 individuals of all ages the opportunity to release, explore and develop their creative talents. The art exhibitions and theatre productions we produce in a year are enjoyed by on average 200,000 people.