Day 58: We are all a work of art

The true beauty of a person can most readily be seen through the eyes of a parent.  It can take courage to stand up in our perfection-obsessed society and share the unique beauty we all have.

A great example of this courage can be found at a traveling art show from the United Kingdom

Shifting Perspectives ( is a group of photographer parents who thought is was time to showcase the uniqueness of their own children with Down Syndrome.   A beautiful reminder to me that we are all a work of art.


by Ashley Brook, ArtZine Producer

“When my daughter, Billie-Jo was born, there was no positive images of Down Syndrome,” says curator of Shifting Perspectives and photographer, Richard Bailey.  In the course of researching his daughter’s condition, he was disheartened by the photographs he found. Often they depicted people in institutions or disturbing images of people who simply seemed discarded.  This set him and a group of UK photographers who were also parents of children with Down Syndrome, to create new images that reflected their experiences as parents.  To create hope.

“What one of the main overriding ideas of the whole exhibition is to show that these are individuals.  Our children are individuals.  They can’t be summed up by one little box that says Down Syndrome.” says Bailey.

The Dublin Arts Council and Richard Bailey held a self-portrait workshop with the local Down Syndrome community that echoed that sentiment.  Richard asked the participants to show how they feel or what they are, “We had somebody who likes to play guitar, we had a [college] graduate, an Eagle Scout, somebody who liked DJ’ing…I think the main thing this [exhibition] shows is for everybody to look at the individual, and not the condition.”

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