Posts Tagged ‘Down Syndrome World’

The Art of Activism: Raymond Hu

December 6th, 2014 by Global Down Syndrome Foundation

For San Francisco Bay Area artist Raymond Hu, 37, each brushstroke has the potential to inspire people to be better stewards of the planet.

Down Syndrome World
This article is an excerpt from Down Syndrome World magazine, a publication of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation. To receive Down Syndrome World, become a member of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation today at

Raymond Hu

Hu was once a reluctant artist. He initially declined his father’s suggestion that he study Chinese brush painting, but when he finally relented, he was hooked. Hu began learning the medium from internationally acclaimed artist and art professor Lampo Leong in 1990. The work of Jackson Pollock and Georgia O’Keeffe also influenced the development of his style.

After experimenting with painting flowers and landscapes, Hu began creating strikingly evocative paintings of animals, particularly endangered species. The expressiveness of the creatures’ faces and eyes invites viewers to ponder their own impact on the animals’ habitats and futures.

"Cassowary" by Raymond Hu

"Cassowary" by Raymond Hu

Animals are like our friends – we have to protect them,” Hu said. “Part of the reason I paint animals is because I want people to care about them. There are many ways to be an activist. I want to encourage people to be more ecologically and environmentally mindful.”

Hu believes everyone goes through two phases in life.

“You begin as an explorer,” he said. “As you get older, you become an adventurer and begin taking risks.”

Hu’s latest adventure is portrait painting. His next may be education.

“Art is a good way to develop cognitive skills, and it’s fun,” he said. “I’ve attended several National Down Syndrome Congress Annual Conventions in the past 20 years, and I may have inspired many young adults with disabilities to enter the field of fine arts. One day I hope to become a teacher, so I can teach children about the arts and how to paint.”

Read more about Hu’s artistic methods and see more of his artwork by accessing the Down Syndrome World digital edition, available to members of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation. JOIN TODAY!