Since the early 20th Century, the terms Art Brut or Outsider Art have been employed to describe those individuals who produce art from the edges of society. Outside In was set up by Pallant House Gallery in 2006 to bring the ‘outside in', by providing a platform for artists who find it difficult to access the mainstream art world for a variety of reasons such as disability, health, social circumstance or art process. Its goal is to create a level playing field where access is possible for all who create

The main vehicle for the venture is a biennial open art competition, which this year will be held across the whole of the UK. Culminating in a major exhibition at Pallant House Gallery and accompanying regional exhibitions in 2013, the competition also offers a series of awards and an opportunity to have a solo exhibition at Pallant House Gallery.

Alongside there are a number of related opportunities including a London-based competition; STEP UP, a programme for training marginalised artists to lead workshops and research into the history and legacy of ‘Outsider Art; and a dedicated website with online gallery.

Marc Steene, Head of Learning at Pallant House Gallery, has spearheaded the project, describing it as a ‘gentle revolution', designed not to patronise or make a spectacle of but to change the idea that the ‘inside' art world can pick and choose who can and cannot create art and be considered an artist. He says ‘The challenge we are embracing is to reconsider how we define who is and is not an artist and what is and is not artwork in order to change attitudes in the mainstream art world'.

To find out more about Outside In and its many schemes and events please visit the website www.outsidein.org.uk.