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Disability and creativity producing powerful art

Art session at The Searchlight Centre in Newhaven, Sussex Photo: ITV Meridian

A charity-run centre for disabled people in East Sussex is using art to boost the confidence and self-esteem of its clients.

"And in the process," says art tutor Jane Gayler, "we've uncovered some remarkable creative talents."

The latest paintings produced at The Searchlight Centre in Newhaven go on show there tonight in a fund-raising sale.

The Searchlight Centre, Newhaven Credit: ITV Meridian

Searchlight is a residential, training and social centre for people with physical disabilities and learning difficulties.

"Some have only one arm, others have sight problems or short attention spans," says Jane Gayler.

"But every single one of them says they've benefited hugely from the art sessions. It helps them socialise and it's an important focus for creative ability."

"Monkey's Head" by John Jeffery Credit: ITV Meridian

One of the artists attracting strong attention is John Jeffery, a paraplegic with learning difficulties.

His latest work is the abstract painting _Monkey's Head. _

"It's a monkey's head in profile," he said. "Look at the right-hand section for a while and you'll get it!"