An tÉalú (2011)
The focus of this work was to record memories of familiar environments.
For example, the River Lee Project (2008) was a study on the evolving cityscape of Cork,
juxtaposed against the unchanging backdrop of the River Lee. That unchanging presence
brought thoughts of past generations to mind, as I sketched and painted from the quay walls.
That was the inspiration behind this project. The late nineteenth century saw my
Grandfather crossing the River Lee in Cork, along with two of his brothers, as they made
their way to Cobh. These Ballyvourney men were blacksmiths and their intention was to seek
employment in America. Like Many Irish people who made that journey, they found work in
Montana. On a visit there in 2006, President Mary McAleese spoke of how tens of thousands
of Irish made Montana their home, while "they kept Ireland in their hearts". This exhibition
records parts of that journey, the landscape and environment that so many emigrants had to
leave behind. I wanted to share something of the environment of my ancestors as it now is,
and record that experience.
Acrylic on Linen