I Am At Tate Exchange Festival 2020

A unique celebration of creativity with D/deaf, disabled and neurodiverse young people

I Am At Tate Exchange Festival is a partnership between A New Direction, Tate Exchange and London special schools involved in our SEND Network. The festival empowers D/deaf, disabled and neurodiverse young people to explore their creativity. Young people have the chance to showcase their talents, leadership, ideas and opinions.

As we move into our fourth year of programming, this year will feature more youth-led activity than ever before. Taking the theme of ‘Power’ as inspiration, we will be working with students to help bring their ideas to life. Expect dance, music, craft, theatre, textiles and so much more!

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How can I get involved?

The festival will be open to the public from 1pm to 5pm every day from 24-28 March 2020. The festival space is located on the 5th Floor of the Blavatnik Building in Tate Modern.

Download the Tate Exchange Social Story

The space is fully accessible and everyone is welcome. The festival is also free to attend. Visitors will be able to get involved in creative activities and learn more about what students have been up to.

There are also afternoon events taking place each day – find out more and book below:

Our aim is to make I Am At Tate Exchange Festival as inclusive as possible. However, we're always trying to get better. If you have any comments, suggestions or ideas please get in touch – we’d love to hear from you. Or, even better, come along to the festival and chat to one of the team!

Information for school groups

Unfortunately, we are now at capacity and cannot accommodate any additional school groups for the morning sessions. However, if you would be interested in bringing a school group along in the afternoon, please get in touch:

Get in touch

Why is this work important?

Last year we welcomed over 300 young people and 3,000 visitors into the space. For many, the festival was the first time they'd ever visited Tate Modern. This is not unusual – young people with additional needs still face many barriers when accessing cultural spaces in London.

Through I Am At Tate Exchange Festival, we hope to provide a model for cultural organisations to address issues around accessibility, representation and inclusion. Over the last four years, we have worked closely with Tate to continually improve the welcome for visitors, and make sure the Tate Exchange space is as accessible and inclusive as possible. This includes reserving a dedicated lift for students coming to the festival and providing disability confidence training to all Tate staff involved in the festival.

Working with A New Direction is a truly transformative experience in so many ways for us. We have changed our working practices at Tate Exchange and throughout the building as a direct result of our collaboration with them, and we are on a valued continual learning journey. The work we see them do here at Tate Exchange is transformative in its own right – this is tangible as soon as you step into the room - and their programme with us is an annual highlight. Each year builds upon the previous one and we look forward to many years to come.
Cara Courage, Head of Tate Exchange

We look forward to giving more young people their first gallery experience in 2020. Once again, we will demonstrate that children of all abilities can play an active role in London’s culture.

Spending time at A New Direction's I Am Festival impressed on me what a truly wonderful initiative it is. Over the past three years its team have built something which is equal parts inspirational, educational, impactful and joyful, while still remaining inclusive and accessible for all. Seeing so many young people - many of whom who had not been to Tate before - having the time of their lives has been such an amazing and humbling experience. In a time where increasing numbers of students with SEND are being forgotten, projects like the I Am Festival are only becoming more vital, and we at Tate are immensely proud to play our part in it.
Frances Morris, Tate Modern Director