ArtKeeper 2024: Samuel Leighton-Dore

ArtKeeper 2024: Samuel Leighton-Dore

Samuel Leighton-Dore is a multidisciplinary artist and screenwriter based on the Gold Coast.

Working predominantly across ceramics, illustration and animation, he’s interested in combining traditional mediums with on-screen storytelling, bringing a sense of heart and humour to complex themes of identity, sexuality and mental health.

He's released two books, How To Be A Big Strong Man (2019, Simon & Schuster) and Wow It’s All A Lot (2023, HarperCollins), with past works acquired by the Gold Coast City Collection (Cloud Drive, 2020) and featured on the cover of The Journal of Australian Ceramics. His short film Showboy (2014) was a finalist in the Sydney Film Festival Dendy Awards and won Best Short Film at the Melbourne Queer Film Festival. He's currently developing a slate of animated projects with Sad Man Studio, a boutique animation studio he runs with his husband.

#The project

Samuel will be creating development materials for Birds of Paradise, an animated short film reimagining of the Meter Maids origin story, told from the perspective of non-dominant voices in 1960s Gold Coast. Drawing on HOTA’s extensive archives, Leighton-Dore aims to develop a rich, vibrant work of historical fiction that celebrates the Gold Coast’s unique history through a camp, critical and comedic lens. Samuel will work to write and storyboard a screenplay for the short film, as well as produce a creative document for the project. 

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HOTA proudly acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we are situated, the Kombumerri families of the Yugambeh Language Region. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and recognise their continuing connections to the lands, waters and their extended communities throughout South East Queensland.