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New hospital art exhibition celebrates World Down Syndrome Day

A new exhibition focussing on celebrating World Down Syndrome Day (21 March) has been launched at York Hospital.

The exhibition provides a fascinating insight into what Down syndrome is, what it means to have Down syndrome, and how people with Down syndrome play a vital role in our lives and communities. It includes paintings and photographs by local artists and photographers.

James Taylor, Medical Director at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, officially opened the exhibition which will be on display on the main corridor until 2 May 2016.

James said: “We’re very proud to be hosting this exhibition and supporting World Down Syndrome Day. Our thanks go to everyone who has contributed, from the artists themselves to the inspiring people pictured in these beautiful paintings and photographs and all those sharing information to help us raise awareness.”

On display are paintings by Sue Clayton, who has a son with Down syndrome. Sue is a York based fine artist with a large collection of portraits of people with Down syndrome. 

Sue said: “I hope that people enjoy looking at the paintings as much as I enjoyed creating them. I try to let the vibrancy and character of the models shine through in my portraits. My son James has been the inspiration behind my exhibitions.”

Photographer Dan Sharp has produced a series of photographs especially for the exhibition. He has worked with local people with Down syndrome visiting subjects at their own home and supplying each of them with a disposable camera which they used to capture some of their own photographs.  These photos are also on display within the exhibition.

Also exhibiting is David Kenward, a photographer who has Down syndrome. David attended mainstream school throughout his education and has gone on to become a founder member of the arts and crafts Co-operative, Blueberry Academy. In 2012 David became involved with Heart & Sold, an initiative to showcase the artistic work of people with Down syndrome.

More information about the exhibition and the artists can be found here.

Photo caption: Back row – Sue Clayton, artist; Joe Sharp, model; Dan Sharp, photographer

Front row – David Kenward, photographer; James Clayton, model

22 March 2016

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