Documentary Shows Successes and Struggles of Artists with Down Syndrome

“David Bowie” by Digby Webster


The Australian artist who helped create the logo for his country’s upcoming Special Olympics is featured in a new documentary. “Flying Solo” follows Digby Webster and his friends Tracie Sammut and Tom Elenor – all born with the genetic disorder known as Down syndrome – for four years as they strive to live independently in today’s world. According to its Australian-American director Ehsan Knopf, the film was made in close collaboration with the subjects, and features frank discussions about disability along with inspirational scenes of mentorship and friendship. “It also reveals the unique contributions people with conditions like Down syndrome can make to society,”
Knopf adds.

It premieres March 21, World Down Syndrome Day, on Vimeo on demand and Amazon Prime.

Tracie, age 39 and Tom, 36, are both actors. Digby, age 30, is an artist in Sydney who is known for his bold and colorful oil pastel and ink artwork. In the past 10 years, he has exhibited in many solo and group shows. Digby is the March 2018 Artist in Residence at Arterie, an international award-winning art program. In “Flying Solo” he tackles fundamental skills like money management and cooking, and undertakes a new job as he prepares for an upcoming exhibition.

Digby was commissioned by branded content company Taste Creative to create artwork for Special Olympics Australia, which begins April 16. The result – six paintings that reflect the landscape of South Australia – “captures the texture, color and vibrancy of the area superbly,” reports B&T, a trade magazine for the advertising, marketing, media and PR industries. “The 2018 Special Olympics National Games identity silhouette captures the joy of movement that comes from sport.”

“We’re thrilled with the final outcome of the identity and are proud to bring the first inclusive logo to life,” notes Bredette Koen, games director, National Games 2018, Special Olympics Australia

“I am very excited and very happy to do this,” says Digby. “I have never done something like this before. It is big and amazing and I loved working with Henry [Smith, creative director] at Taste Creative.”

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