Learning Disability Today
Supporting professionals working in learning disability and autism services

Man with learning disability says he is “proud” to have his art displayed at exhibition

Mark Pearson, who has a learning disability, is one of 80 artists who has been selected for an art exhibition in London this month.

The exhibition is put on by Outside In, a charity which gives a platform to artists who face ‘significant barriers’ in the art world.

The charity has held the exhibition for the last six years, and this year, the theme was ‘Humanity’. It is being held at Sotheby’s London showroom until the 27th January, before touring to Glasgow in the summer and Brighton and Hove in the Winter.

Mencap supported Mark to find a community arts project

Mark, 57, learned to paint while attended the Community Art Project – an art scheme run by Darlington Council for adults with a learning disability.

He has now been painting for more than eight years, mainly producing watercolour pictures, prints and hand painted cards. His painting, ‘Friendly Face’, which was selected for the exhibition, was produced while Roger was at the Community Art Project.

The learning disability charity Mencap supported Roger to find his community art group. Yvonne Rogers, Service Manager at Mencap, says the charity is “so proud” of what has achieved.

“Art has given him an outlet and an opportunity for him to be part of something he really enjoys,” she added.

“I feel proud seeing my artwork on display”

Talking about his artwork being shown at the ‘Humanity: The Outside In National Exhibition’, Mark Pearson says: “I really enjoyed my trip to London and visiting Sotheby’s with my family. I feel proud seeing my artwork on display.

“Doing art makes me feel relaxed and very happy. I always look forward to attending the art classes supported by Mencap, where I have met new friends and improved my creative skills.

“I’m looking forward to creating more paintings and drawings to share with my family and friends!”

Mark’s brother, Philip, added that Mencap’s continued support has been “fundamental” to Mark’s health and wellbeing.

“Our heartfelt thank you to the amazing team at Mark’s supported living service who show Mark so much love and attention every single day!” he said.

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