Escape Into Life

At eight cuts gallery, we have always been fans of Escape Into Life, the amazing artists’ and writers’ community brought into being by Chris Al-Aswad, the inspirational young man in whose name we are honoured to hold the Christopher Al-Aswad Prize for outstanding contribution to breaking down barriers in the arts.

In order to carry on the amazing work that Chris began before his tragic death earlier this year, the team behind Escape Into Life (EIL) is looking for people who would be able to write articles and essays, and carry out intreviews with artists, introducing new work to the site. This is a great opportunity to be part of something amazing. Below is some information about the site and what they are looking for from the team. If you think you can do something, please e-mail or

Have a read of the below, but first and foremost get to know the wonderful work EIL does.

EIL is about alternative art, always a little off beat, never run of the mill or obvious, often startling though avoiding NSFW. New artists from round the world, not just the US,  really good artists and art that where possible is somehow innovative, surprising, experimental or rule breaking.

We look for art essays of about 1000 words (absolute max of 1500) and for us the visual content – the images – are paramount and crucial. If someone has an idea for a piece, ideally they run it by us first, sending the images they propose to use, and then draft up if we approve the choice of subject and submit that for editing, comments etc. Previously published is ok if only published in one other place (eg own blog).

Chris wanted everyone to be able to enjoy the content of EIL even if they did not have a strong educational background so articles should avoid convoluted writing.

At the same time he had a strong vocation to educate, so bringing good quality art and writing to the attention of followers is definitely an aim. Always we look for visual content that is memorable, makes you look twice, eye popping in some way and following Chris, we continue to favour the innovative and the marginal/outsider/emerging over the established, academic and mainstream. All the same many of our essays are about well established artists and in Artist Watch we on occasion publish artists now established and mainstream who once had themselves pushed the boundaries.

We like to hear the author’s voice, to have their personality, their opinions come across; we like good grammar and good use of semi colons!! (Lol)

We don’t have writers do self promotion in the pieces but some self promotion is possible in the bio info at the end of a piece.

If someone becomes a regular contributor we like them to do their own uploading to our Word Press blog, and then they get home page credit  namely “posted by”, but for occasional pieces then they get an editor who will post the piece and it will be the editor’s name on home page and the writer’s name at the end of the piece and in the Writers category too of course. Clicking  a writer’s name leads to pieces they have published on EIL. And that is about all the “payment” you get, needless to say we have no cash.

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