Photographer, Dan Murphy, launches his book of portraits of children with Down Syndrome 8 years ago

Photographer, Dan Murphy, launches his book of portraits of children with Down Syndrome

Today the photographic exhibition 'Here I Am' will launch in Dublin Castle before touring other locations in the coming months.

Photographer Dan Murphy looks after a young girl with Down Syndrome and through her, two years ago, he was inspired to undertake a series of portraits of children with Down Syndrome. He told Brendan O'Connor on last week's Saturday Night Show:

"I'd like to change perspectives of people with Down Syndrome. Often there's a preconceived idea of who they are and people should be able to see beyond all that and see a real person and make room for them to be part of society."

The project captured many people's imagination from Gill and MacMillan who will be distributing 'Here I Am' for free, to the anonymous benefactor who donated a large sum of money to pay for the large-scale installation of the exhibition.

Last week Brendan O'Connor told us "Dan Murphy told me he wanted to change the world. He wanted to change how we all look at children. At their beauty and their innocence and particularly children with Down Syndrome. Obviously this struck a chord with me because of my own daughter, Mary. We tend to stare at people who look different and then to look away really quickly." This photographer wants us to look and look again and really see the child not just one aspect of them.

Many of the children featured in the book joined O'Connor on his show including the book's cover star, Saoirse.


Sandra, Saoirse's mother, explained how more awareness of Down Syndrome in each community could help support parents. "Saoirse is them same as anyone; she is the same as her brother and her sister. She loves sports, and she loves her dog".

"It's a beautiful and awe-inspiring piece of work and do you know what? I think it might actually change the world just a little bit", said O'Connor.

Exhibition starts in Dublin Castle and Irish Rail will be displaying the pieces also.

'Here I Am' is available here for €30 with all proceeds going to Down Syndrome Ireland.

To host the exhibition in your community visit Down Syndrome Ireland for more information.