Offaly artist to be showcased on the national stage

Inspired by being a deckhand on a boating trip

Justin Kelly


Justin Kelly


Offaly artist to be showcased on the national stage

An Offaly artist whose maritime inspiration stemmed from the unusual job as a deckhand on a fishing boat will display her vividly colour-fused glass at Ireland’s premier art fair, Art Source, at the RDS from November 10-12.

Over 15,000 people are expected to attend the year’s biggest art show, which will give Irish art lovers the unique chance to get their hands on 100 pieces of original artwork for €100 each on a first-come, first-served basis.

Among these will be Glasshammer artist Michelle O’Donnell from Rhode, whose pieces have been presented to former US President Barack Obama and Queen Elizabeth II.

The descriptive Donegal native draws inspiration from the sea and the strand and loves to bleed colours together while melting and slowly cooling glass.

One of her first experiences with the sea was when she worked the unusual job as a deckhand on a fishing boat in the French Channel.

“Diving under the water, you saw all these fabulous colours of blues, browns and turquoise all merging with each other,” said Michelle.

“I also found the physical work to be rewarding and enlightening.”

Michelle, who is a horse lover, is currently renovating her workshop and has designed the awards for both Bord Bia and the Thoroughbred Breeders in recent years.

“Fusing is the most alluring process ever and it’s so easy to get hooked on,” she said.

This year’s Art Source sold out in record time and features over 130 contemporary artists and 20 Irish and international galleries gathering together to showcase painting, sculpture, photography, illustration, prints and ceramic art.

“Art Source offers visitors the opportunity to purchase a one-off affordable artwork to make their home unique and also the opportunity to meet the artists and hear about their work,” said show organiser Patrick O’Sullivan.

There is a huge emphasis on visitor involvement at Art Source, and this year the show features interactive oil and resin painting demonstrations and there are free children’s art workshops for under 12s.

Gormley’s Fine Art will be showing a selection of original screen prints by the anonymous British-based artist and political activist Banksy who has built a huge following despite his identity remaining a mystery.

Among the pieces being shown by Gormley's are Banksy's iconic Flying Copper image of a policeman with a yellow smiley face, his Girl With A Balloon and his Tesco Tomato Soup Can parody on the work by Andy Warhol.

A world-first cookbook is going to be a recipe for success at Art Source as two brothers undertake to raise funds to change the lives of impoverished children and displaced people abroad.

Andrew and Calvin Sweeney, the founders of Syrias Vibes, will be selling The Artist's Cookbook which features creative recipes, illustrated by the artwork of 100 Irish and international artists.

Art Source takes place at the RDS, Dublin, from November 10-12, admission is €10 adults, €8 OAPs. Children under 16 free only if accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Opening times: Friday Nov 10: 11am-9pm, Sat Nov 11: 10am-6pm, Sun Nov 12: 10am-6pm

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