Artists and children join forces for exhibition

Posted on: 16th January, 2014

Category: Arts & Entertainment

Contributor: West Cork People

An exhibition featuring the work of artists and children will open at West Cork Arts Centre at 5pm on Saturday, January 18.

‘Practice – What happens when artists and children work together?’ is an exhibition of work by artists and the children and young people they work with. Ann Davoren, Director of West Cork Arts Centre said, “I would encourage everyone, especially parents, children, teachers and artists to come to this exhibition. We are very proud to be launching this national touring exhibition here in West Cork”.

The seven exhibiting artists are from all over Ireland. Helen Barry, Ann Donnelly, Naomi Draper, Ann Henderson, Maree Hensey, Fiona Kelleher and Christine Mackey have worked with children ranging in age from eight months and up, to create some very imaginative and diverse work. The exhibition includes photography, drawing, painting, video, installation and sound.

On the day before the opening a piece by first, second and third class pupils from Gurraneasig National School, Kilbrittan, will be created in collaboration with artist Maree Hensey. This large drawing will take pride of place in the gallery for the duration of the exhibition.

“This is a very important exhibition for us. Our work with children is central to what the Arts Centre is all about. More than 100 children and young people come to the arts centre every week for drama, dance and art classes.

“Last year alone we had 300 primary and secondary students from throughout West Cork visit the gallery and create artwork of their own. In an area as large as West Cork distance can be an issue but we have had groups from as far afield as Bere Island and Allihies taking part. After the children visit the gallery we then follow up with art classes in their own schools. There will be an exhibition of artwork by Primary School children here in West Cork Arts Centre this March, which we are very much looking forward to.”

Ann also commented on the importance of supporting the artists of the area too. “At West Cork Arts Centre, we do whatever we can to create opportunities for local artists. In 2013, we directly employed 37 artists to work delivering art classes in schools, hospital, day care centres and at the Arts Centre. We also like to create prospects for training and professional development for artists, and in an area a vast as West Cork networking among artists is vital, so we have bi-monthly meetings called Eye2Eye, where artists can come, talk about their work and exchange ideas.”

There is a programme of events taking place throughout the run of ‘Practice’. A day-long workshop for artists and art students will be delivered by a number of the exhibiting artists prior to the opening on January 18. Ann Henderson will be streaming live workshops and demonstrations from her studio on Rathlin Island, where she lives and works. These will take place on specific days during the exhibition and are open to the general public. For further information on these events, contact 028 22090.

‘Practice – What happens when artists and children work together?’ continues at West Cork Arts Centre until February 22, 2014.

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