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Nina Muehlemann

Nina Muehlemann is doing a PhD in English Literature about arts and performance during the London 2012 Paralympics, specifically the way disabled artists engage with the idea of the superhuman or supercrup . In her blog, she writes about her research, about disability in the media and in art and the gap between mainstream and Disability Culture.

Posts by Nina Muehlemann

crip magazine 2 cover

The launch of Crip Magazine #2

I am at an event in Zurich, Switzerland, where artist Eva Egermann presents the second issue of Crip Magazine, a DIY publication about disability culture. Edited by Egermann herself, both the first and the second issue contain contributions in German and English (some of them translated in both languages) that ...

a dark human silhouette in front of a dark green background

Emotional and topical: one day at ‘The Sick of the Fringe’

The Sick of the Fringe, commissioned by the Wellcome Trust, was a 3-day festival held from February 17-19 in various venues across London. Review by Nina Muehlemann. The line-up consisted mainly artists who had performed at the Edinburgh Fringe whose work speaks about the body, illness and disability. As such, even ...

the artist wearing all black with a black crutch and elaborately decorated prosthetic legs with sparkly heels dangling from her skirt

The extravagantly abundant artwork of Jenni-Juulia Wallinheimo-Heimonen

Finnish disability artist Jenni-Juulia Wallinheimo-Heimonen makes quite an impression. When she and Nina Muehlemann met at a Disability Arts conference in Bergen, Norway, she had a set of elaborately decorated prosthetic legs, complete with metallic high heels, dangling next to her own legs so that she could ‘dance in high ...

photo of Brazilian rapper Billy Saga wearing sun-glasses

Unlimited: Jo Verrent discusses the international ripples created by the Unlimited programme

Unlimited’s senior producer Jo Verrent talks to Nina Muehlemann with reflections on how far Unlimited has come since 2012, and comment on the impact of the programme with developments nationally and internationally – at a time when the political climate for supporting artists is becoming more challenging. "It’s an exciting ...

photo of a group of brightly dressed actors posing on a bright yellow and red stage

Unlimited: Tales from the Shed

What kind of family-friendly events are there at the Unlimited festival to enjoy with little ones? As Nina Muehlemann experiences her first disability arts festival as a mum, she writes about taking her son to Chickenshed’s ‘Tales from the Shed’, an interactive, inclusive performance for under-fives. As a parent who identifies ...

Book cover that features a photograph from In Water I'm Weightless and the title Atypical Plays for Atypical Actors

Fan moment: Kaite O’Reilly’s book launch at the Unlimited festival

Playwright Kaite O’Reilly published a collection of some of her plays with Oberon Books earlier this year, entitled ‘Atypical Plays for Atypical Actors’ (read a great review here). The five pieces featured in the book are all dealing with disability and/or illness, and two of them, In Water I’m Weightless ...

A photograph of Jack Dean holding a microphone

Unlimited: Jack Dean, Grandad and the Machine

An experiment of make-believe and storytelling, Nina Muehlemann reviews Jack Dean’s steampunk fairytale for grownups which played at Southbank Centre’s Unlimited festival 7-8 September. Entering the Southbank Centre’s Blue Room to see Jack Dean’s Grandad and the Machine which was commissioned by Unlimited (administered by Shape and Artsadmin), I didn’t quite ...

Photo of the tickets for 'Harry Potter and the Cursed Child'

Harry Potter and Disability: An almost spoiler-free review of ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’

There are some definite perks when you are a disabled person or going out with one. Everyone knows about the parking, of course, but did you know that, just by being a crip or dating one, you can see the year’s most anticipated play, sold out until end of 2017, ...

Tempting Failure logo

Challenging Spaces: Access and Performance Art – A roundtable discussion at Tempting Failure festival

Tempting Failure, a performance festival ran for its 5th year from July 21st – July 29th with events taking place in several venues in Hackney, London. After being held in London in its first year, the festival was held in Bristol for a few years until it returned to London. ...

Performer Liz Carr sits in a golden wheelchair on a red carpet with a male and a female actor posing beside her.

Sequins, show tunes and hard questions: A preview of ‘Assisted Suicide – The Musical’

After seeing a preview of ‘Assisted Suicide – The Musical’ on Saturday, I started writing about it, and then two things happened: The media reported enthusiastically about the ‘inspiring’ choice of Jerika Bolen, a disabled 14-year-old, to commit assisted suicide, her only wish being to be prom queen before she ...

toddler watching the superhumans ad on a laptop

In defense of ‘We’re the Superhumans’

I love Channel 4’s 2016 ‘We’re the Superhumans’ ad.But then, of course I’m biased, because the ad makes a perfect babysitter, it really does. My son, who is almost 18 months, is completely enthralled by the clip, wiggling his curly little head to the rhythm of the music. Whenever it’s ...

Purple silhouette of a figure raising an arm

Brian Lobel’s Purge at the Southbank: Social Media, Friendship and Love

At first glance, Brian Lobel’s ‘Purge’ is a game show about social media. The project started in 2011, when he gave strangers the opportunity to decide which ones of his 1300 facebook friends to keep and which ones to delete, having only a 60-second window to introduce each friend to ...

photo of two doorways collaged next to each other: one is a forbidding green door with classic stone architecture around it; the other two adjoining blue doors above a series of stone steps

Unlimited 2014: Bekki Perriman: The Doorways Project

Bekki Perriman’s installation ‘The Doorways Project’ explores homelessness through spoken word and photography. Nina Muehlemann reflects on the quiet and cautiously assembled work in the Royal Festival Hall, that is part of this Unlimited research and development award. The installation is tucked away on the third floor. As a wheelchair user, ...

A painting by Lea Cummings featuring mesmeric patterns and psychedelic colours

Unlimited 2014: Lea Cummings: ‘Cosmic fields of endless possibilities’

Nina Muehlemann allows herself to fall under the colourful spell of Lea Cummings’ ‘Cosmic fields of endless possibilities’. Glasgow-based artist and musician Lea Cummings’ latest exhibition, is placed on the appropriately-named Spirit Level in the basement of the Royal Festival Hall Tucked behind a corner through the ‘Tunnel of Love’, Lea Cummings’ ...

Photograph of Artist Jo Bannon is naked, shown from the shoulders upwards against a pale background with her white hair being blown forward.

Unlimited 2014: Jo Bannon talks about Exposure

Nina Muehlemann met artist Jo Bannon during a networking meeting with other artists and people involved with the second round of Unlimited. She talked to Jo about her Unlimited 2014 commission, ‘Exposure’ over a glass of wine. Jo is very excited to show ‘Exposure’ in a new setting, and explains the ...

A photograph of Sue Austin in her underwater wheelchair, she is upside down with her arms out to the side.

Unlimited 2014: Sue Austin talks about ‘Creating the Spectacle’

Since the first Unlimited Festival, the life and work of artist Sue Austin has undergone huge transformations. Nina Muehlemann talked with the artist to discuss the success of ‘Creating the Spectacle!’ When I speak to Sue, she is full of energy and positivity. Clearly, the last two years were full of ...