Member Profile : Donna McDonald

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I am an arts psychotherapist, creative arts-disability studies researcher and emerging arts practitioner. 

I work towards an improved understanding of the interactions between creativity and individual fulfilment, community wellbeing and social justice. As well as developing my own drawing and art-making skills as tools for research, I examine the work of other creative artists to find fresh ways of understanding difficult issues. 

The power of personal stories guide me in my efforts to stir ideas into life, influence policy for the better, and create bonds of fresh understanding between individuals. My disability and creative arts research areas include policy, practices and services, disability rights, and the historical and contemporary influence of visual arts narratives of people with disability. 

In 2017-2018, I am undertaking research with Associate Professor Bree Hadley, Associate Director of QUT's Creative Lab, to explore the intersections between the creative arts (including performing arts), and disability (including implications for the NDIS apropos the role of disability service providers and disability arts organisations). 

For over 30 years, I was involved in developing social policy as a social worker, policy advisor and senior manager. I worked in several policy domains in Australia and England, providing policy advice to Federal, State and Local Governments. 

My publications include my memoir of grief, 'Jack's Story', following my infant son's sudden death in 1987, and essays such as 'I Hear with my Eyes' (Griffith Review 2006), 'The Reluctant Memoirist' (Griffith Review 2011) and 'When Time Stops: The Courage for Joy' (Stories of Complicated Grief: a critical anthology 2014). My book, 'The Art of Being Deaf: a memoir', was published by Gallaudet University Press: Washington DC. March 2014. 

In 2016, I showed a series of drawings, 'Talking back to Diane Arbus' in two art exhibitions - 'The 5 FIVE Show: Queensland Artists Thinking' (Logan West Library, Artist's Walk) and 'The 5 FIVE Show: 4 + 1 Artists Exploring' (Woolloongabba Art Gallery, www.wag.com.au ). In 2017, I exhibited in 'Everywhere World' at the Woolloongabba Gallery Upstairs. 

I live and work in Turrbal Jagerra country.

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Arts Front Leadership Group

A leadership group supporting the Art Front project.

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A leadership group supporting the Art Front project.

Little Lunch Online (LLOL) is a daily online meet up and creative exchange to support the Australian arts sector during the Corona Virus pandemic. 

Mar 23 2020 To Sep 30 2020