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Sweden Embassy holds exhibition celebrating dreams, visions of people with Down syndrome

Dec. 27, 2022 - 14:40 By Sanjay Kumar

A poster of ‘Icons’ , an exhibition showcasing right to exist. (Embassy of Sweden in Seoul)

The Embassy of Sweden and the Korea Foundation is co-hosting Icons, an exhibition of 21 portraits of people with Down syndrome, at the Korea Foundation Gallery in Jongno-gu, central Seoul. The event runs through Feb. 9.

The photographed portraits, which show models with Down syndrome representing various famous icons in popular culture, art and society, aims at challenging the preconceptions about beauty and other social standards.

The exhibition brings often marginalized groups of people to center stage to remind the audience that they have always been the part of the society, according to the Swedish Embassy in Seoul.

A poster of ‘Icons’ , an exhibition showcasing right to exist. (Embassy of Sweden in Seoul)

Inspired from a workshop of Glada Hudik-teatern, a Swedish theatrical organization founded in Hudiksvall in 1996, the portraits were taken to emphasize the desires and visions of people with Down syndrome; and that their identities should not be undermined by their condition.

Icons was first exhibited in 2016 at the Fotografiska museum in Stockholm, one of the world's largest photography museums. The exhibition has since toured many cities in and outside of Sweden.

Swedish Ambassador to Korea Daniel Wolven said he hoped the exhibition would inspire and thrill the Korean audience as it delivers a message about "the importance of not limiting ourselves in our visions and dreams."

Korea Foundation President Kim Ghee-whan said he hoped the exhibition would remind people that humans have their own characteristics and weaknesses, but that they can pursue richer and a more prosperous life in society through interactions.