Local club has that ‘Friday feeling’

Posted on: 6th October, 2014

Category: Features

Contributor: West Cork People

Above: Members of the Friday Club Rosscarbry, pictured with Fr. John McCarthy, after presenting their gift of a unique set of rosary beads to St. Fachtna’s Parish Church community.

The Rosscarbery Friday Club has created a unique artwork— a set of Rosary Beads — which was presented to Fr. John McCarthy during the month of Mary, May 2014. Potter and artist, Catherine Ryan, helped the group fulfill its aim to create the beads in porcelain for the Church. The designs in each decade of the rosary represent different meanings within the catholic faith to form a truly unique piece. The artwork will be protected in a glass case before being displayed in the church, adding special interest for all visitors.

This is the third in a group of three unique artworks created by the Friday Club, which are being given homes in and around Rosscarbery this year. The second was the Mosaic Table, which was completed in May for the Bealtaine Festival and represents the group’s interpretation of this year’s theme, ‘To catch the heart off guard’. It can be found in the Memorial Grove at Pairc a Tobair. Again, Catherine Ryan led the team in creating this wonderfully colourful piece depicting the elements of Earth, Wind, Fire and Water. The first piece in the trilogy will shortly be presented to the Dean of Rosscarbery Cathedral. ‘An Irish Garden in Felt’ was created for last year’s Bealtaine Festival, again under Catherine’s guidance. This joyous piece responded to the theme ‘Grow Happy’ and the group felt the ideal place for it is the Cathedral Church of St. Fachtna’s for display in time for this and future years’ Harvest Festival celebrations.

The Friday Club, a group of older people who gather every Friday at the Social Centre with their coordinator, Jenny Barclay, have now in fact completed a total of five artworks in Rosscarbery. Their outstanding achievements include the much loved Stained Glass Artwork on the lagoon walk, ‘A Lifetime in Four Seasons’.    This remarkable work was made in 2012 for the Bealtaine Festival and commemorates a lifetime from birth to old age, expressed in stained glass through the colours of the seasons. Stained Glass artist Jessica Finken, trained the members and directed the project. Jenny Barclay gathered the skills of local craftsmen to frame and erect the work, which was a gift to the community.  It is a much admired addition to the local attractions and has been used as an iconic image of Rosscarbery, even inspiring one American gentleman to pop the question to his lady during a visit to the area. The previous year, in 2011, a collage was created from recycled scraps of fabric. Depicting a view of Rosscarbery from the causeway, this piece is on display in the Celtic Ross Hotel Dining Room. The theme that year was ‘Push the Boat Out’ and there is no doubt that this active group does just that. For next year’s festival, the Friday Club intend to put together an Art Trail leaflet to be distributed to other groups around West Cork so that everyone can find and admire their wonderful works.

The club meets every Friday in the Social Centre for a day of activities and new members are always welcome.  If you would like to come and join, meet friends for a chat and a meal and become involved in these and other most enjoyable pastimes, please contact Jenny (co-ordinator) on 086 833 7499.

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