Many hundreds of Western Australians with disabilities are using art to highlight their talents and abilities.
About 160 works of art, entered in the 1992 Ansett Golden Wings art awards for people with disabilities, have been displayed for the past week at the Perth Domestic Airport.
Disability Services Minister Eric Ripper said today the artworks represented the triumph of talent over disability and demonstrated a wide diversity of excellence in artistic expression.
"This display shows the wealth of talent and skill in the disability community, which needs to be encouraged and developed to the benefit of the whole of society," Mr Ripper said.
"The considerable ability of people in the disabilities field is not confined to artistic endeavour, and is a resource which the general community cannot afford to ignore."
The Minister commended Ansett and the disability organisation ACROD for their support of the awards, which have been an annual event since 1982.
Many hundreds of Western Australians with disabilities have entered the awards since their inception, presenting for public view their artistic achievements in the areas of mixed media, oil and acrylic, water colour, drawing, sculpture, ceramics, printmaking, jewellery and weaving.
"Creating works of art unlocks another dimension in the lives of people with disabilities and this has led to many positive developments in the lives of entrants," Mr Ripper said.
"Art is an important way for people to communicate with the general community, to show their talent and to encourage an understanding that they are people first, who should not be labelled by their disability."
The Minister said the Golden Wing awards were increasing in status, and were in line with the Government's determination that people with disabilities be given a fair go in Western Australia.