MAUD ROWELL

00:00 / 01:37

In Maud's words: I’m Maud Rowell, I’m 25, a journalist and writer.

I am blind due to FEVR, caused by a gene I’ve had all my life but remained inactive until I was 19. While finishing my gap year working and travelling in Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea, I realised people’s faces had become invisible. I spent a few weeks frequenting Seoul hospitals and received the first of many injections.
My condition is degenerative, so how I see the world does change over time, sometimes gradually and sometimes fairly quickly. It primarily affects my central vision, so while my peripheral vision remains intact, the middle field is a shimmering hole, like a vibrating sun, oscillating between black and white a hundred times a second.
Often we don’t necessarily notice how much social interactions rely on visual cues. It’s tricky to gauge someone’s emotion if they’re expressing it on their face and not vocally, and I can’t interpret body language or recognise people anymore. Sighted people don’t assume I’m cold and apathetic because I’m not reacting to something you’re putting out there. Try to be a little more conscious of how you’re communicating something to me.
I think art is a fantastic tool to help people conceptualise blindness a little differently. Sight loss is a spectrum, and we should celebrate the diversity of viewpoints within the visually impaired community. Plus, I think blind people making art subverts a damaging presumption that if you can’t see, you can’t engage with visual practices. Yes we can - let us show you.

MAUD ROWELL

00:00 / 01:37

In Maud's words: I’m Maud Rowell, I’m 25, a journalist and writer.

I am blind due to FEVR, caused by a gene I’ve had all my life but remained inactive until I was 19. While finishing my gap year working and travelling in Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea, I realised people’s faces had become invisible. I spent a few weeks frequenting Seoul hospitals and received the first of many injections.
My condition is degenerative, so how I see the world does change over time, sometimes gradually and sometimes fairly quickly. It primarily affects my central vision, so while my peripheral vision remains intact, the middle field is a shimmering hole, like a vibrating sun, oscillating between black and white a hundred times a second.
Often we don’t necessarily notice how much social interactions rely on visual cues. It’s tricky to gauge someone’s emotion if they’re expressing it on their face and not vocally, and I can’t interpret body language or recognise people anymore. Sighted people don’t assume I’m cold and apathetic because I’m not reacting to something you’re putting out there. Try to be a little more conscious of how you’re communicating something to me.
I think art is a fantastic tool to help people conceptualise blindness a little differently. Sight loss is a spectrum, and we should celebrate the diversity of viewpoints within the visually impaired community. Plus, I think blind people making art subverts a damaging presumption that if you can’t see, you can’t engage with visual practices. Yes we can - let us show you.

EXHIBITIONS

EXHIBITIONS