Downing is known for his ceramic sculptures and large-scale public art projects. His work is highly articulated with textures, patterns, and colors that help abstract their figuration, imparting the sculptures with a sense of the emblematic. His work conveys emotional states both uplifting and solemn all while exuding a sense of humor. Downing has exhibited in Brazil, Europe and the United States in museum collections, public art venues and private collections. He teaches all aspects of ceramics with specialized knowledge in kiln theory/design and glazes firing processes.