The Arts Department of Wexford County Council and Wexford Arts Centre are delighted to announce the successful applicants for the ninth year of the Living Arts Project.

The Arts Department of Wexford County Council in partnership with Wexford Arts Centre are delighted to announce this year’s successful artists and schools for this year’s Living Arts Project. The aim of the Living Arts Project is to provide children with an understanding and appreciation of contemporary visual art. Selected primary schools have the opportunity to host an artist in residence for nine weeks during the school year.

In 2021, an open call took place for interested artists and schools to submit expressions of interest to participate in the project. The artists and schools selected are; artists Jeni Roddy and Nadia Corridan with Boolavogue NS (Enniscorthy); artist Deirdre Buttimer and Olivia O’Dwyer with Our Lady of Lourdes NS (Bunclody); artists Rachel Rothwell and Brid Colleton with Scoil Mhuire (Wexford Town); and artists Kate Murphy and Lynn Haughton with Scoil Naomh Abbáin (Adamstown).

A mentorship programme runs alongside each residency and each artist nominates an independent artist or curator they feel is relevant to their professional practice. This mentorship helps to ensure the effectiveness of the project on an ongoing basis, while also providing a positive critique for the resident artist. In addition, the programme helps to refine methods of engaging with the students throughout each residency. The mentors involved in the 2020-21 project are Cathy Fitzgerald, Niamh Flanagan, Kevin Kavanagh, Marilyn Lennon, Ann Mulrooney, Helen O’Shea and Una Sealy.

All residencies begin this November and culminate in an exhibition in participating schools at Wexford in late Spring / early Summer 2021. Pupils participating in the project have the benefit of detailed guidance from the artist over the period of the residency and the opportunity to see their work in an end-of-residency exhibition.

The Living Art Project is funded by the Arts Department of Wexford County Council, The Arts Council, Creative Ireland, and participating schools. The project is administered by Wexford Arts Centre.

For further information on the Living Arts Project please email catherine@wexfordartscentre.ie or alternatively you can visit www.livingartsproject.ie.

For more information on Wexford County Council’s full arts programme please visit https://www.wexfordcoco.ie/arts-and-culture or call 053 9196441/ email arts@wexfordcoco.ie.

Participating Schools

Jeni Roddy

Lead Artist

For 20 years Jeni Roddy has worked as an interdisciplinary artist and designer in collaborations producing live content through the mediums of theatre, film, live event and performance art. Underpinning her work is an interest in the body's performative relationship to socially constructed and natural environments.

During her career working as a designer and collaborator, she has been lucky enough to be involved with many committed practitioners who have produced some of the most exciting work in recent years in Ireland. They include dance artists Emma Martin, Lisa McLoughlin, theatre artists Grace Dyas, Dylan Tighe, visual artists Michelle Browne, Fergus Byrne, theatre designer Jamie Vartan and Cultural Producer Ríonach Ní Néill.

Jeni Roddy graduated from the London College of Fashion in 2008 with a first class degree in Costume for the Performing Arts. She worked for 9 seasons at the Wexford Festival Opera, heading the Costume Department for four of those and has worked on numerous award winning productions including; Silent Night (,Winner Best Opera Production Irish Times Theatre Awards '14), Cristina Regina de Svezia,( Winner Best Opera Production Irish Times Theatre Awards '13) and No Worst There is None, (Winner Best Theatre Production Irish Times Theatre Awards ’09).

Together with Ríonach Ní Néill, she was co-curator on Weatherproof Me! and lead artist on Umbrella Orphanage, part of the Galway European Capital of Culture 2020 flagship programme Hope it Rains | Soineann nó Doineann.

Jeni currently works at the Wexford Arts Centre developing a teaching practice that combines somatic learning with the development of visual thinking strategies as devices for developing key skills for young practitioners and audiences of the Visual Arts.

Nadia Corridan

Assistant Artist

Nadia Corridan has a BA Honours from Limerick School of Art & Design. Based in Ballindaggin, County Wexford, she teaches children's art at the Presentation Centre, Enniscorthy. Her work can be seen in The Civic Theatre, Dublin; The Boathouse Gallery, Kinsale; The Gallery - Bell Heather and The Wilds Cafe, Enniscorthy and online her website and social media. In addition, her work is currently on view in the Ulster Museum, Belfast until January 2021.

The majority of Nadia's work is figurative with a particular focus on hands. She is repeatedly drawn to the intimate nature that hands can reveal as a subject matter, observing human interactions in both public and private moments. An unspoken dialogue.

The intent of her compositions is carefully considered. Pared back scenes of unknown figures purposely concealed and mostly free from landscape are frozen in cropped compositions. There is a sense of fragmented time occurring, and she aims for the empty canvas to say more than the paint application itself and to push against the traditional idea of a finished painting. It is the artist's intention for her work to probe, evoke and conjure up faded memoirs and gaps of uncertainty, allowing room for the viewer to fill in new narratives and reflect of ones own personal memories.

Deirdre Meehan-Buttimer

Lead Artist

Deirdre Meehan-Buttimer spent 30 years working in Financial Services before beginning her formal visual arts training in Selskar College, Wexford. Following this, she returned to work intermittently, extending her 4 year honours degree timeframe, and graduated from Wexford School of Art & Design, IT Carlow, in 2016 with 1st Class Honours.

Deirdre successfully transitioned from college and has built a strong participatory arts practice.

Amongst other projects, Deirdre is lead artist on the Living Arts Project in Our Lady of Lourdes N.S., Bunclody, an arts-in-education initiative run by Wexford County Council, Wexford Arts Centre and participating primary schools. She was also lead artist in the same programme last year in St Mary’s N.S., Enniscorthy, and Donard N.S. the previous year. In 2019, she was also awarded a Creative Communities Award by Wexford County Council to undertake a project with Wexford Women’s Refuge exploring Coercive Control.

Deirdre’s practice is experimental in nature, driven by an intuitive and curious approach. Her processes are often indexical with a strong photographic/drawing element. She uses non-standard surfaces and everyday objects as ‘mark making’ tools with mixed media.

Olivia O'Dwyer

Assistant Artist

I was born in Limerick, but now live and work in Co. Wexford. My primary focus is painting and drawing. I am most interested in a simple colour palette and image. I instinctively lean towards an object /figure against an amorphous background. I am interested in 'Bad Painting' A purposely raw style of painting developed in the 1970’s, where the idea and the immediacy of the work is most important. I make all the planning and decisions beforehand, the execution can be a perfunctory affair. My influences are painters like Guston. Rose Wylie, Norbert Schwontkowski. Using the language of rhythm, pattern and repetition. I invent a motif and build a narrative within a series of paintings. I work with a sense of urgency this gives the work a certain directness. The work features humorous ideas with an interest in an off-kilter composition and style. I have an eclectic range of interests that inform the work, between the figurative, the landscape and the surreal. I write ideas down, usually something that I have read or heard that speaks to me. My work is a visual diary born out of my everyday life.

Olivia O’Dwyer lives and works in Co. Wexford, Ireland. She has exhibited both nationally and internationally most recently, Courthouse Gallery, Clare, Meet at Peripheries space, Gorey andWexford Arts Centre with the Arts Council Collection of Ireland, Kathmandu, Nepal funded by Culture Ireland, Velletri, Italy She was awarded a residency at the Tyrone Guthrie centre, Co. Monaghan, 2022. Her work is held in the Public Collections of the EU Ambassador, Kathmandu and Wexford Arts Centre collection.

Rachel Rothwell

Lead Artist

Born in Wexford, Rachel Rothwell studied ceramics at the Limerick School of Art and Design, graduating in 2012. In 2013 she spent 12 months in South Korea, where she was an active member of both the Daejeon Arts Collective and the Professional Artist Network Korea (PANK), exhibiting regularly around the country.

From 2015-2017 she lived and worked in Montreux, Switzerland, where she was secretary and resident artist at the arts association Loft A46 and held solo shows in Dublin and Switzerland before completing her MFA degree in Socially Engaged Art at the Haute École d’Art et de Design in Geneva in 2019.

She has exhibited in several locations in Ireland, Switzerland, Finland and Germany as well as South Korea. In 2020, she returned to Ireland, where she was an assistant artist in the Living Arts Project 2020-2021. She also received an artist bursary from Creative Ireland and Wexford County Council, with which she set up the community social history project Wexford Stories.

She is a recipient of an 2021 Arts Council Agility Award, with which she is conducting series of interviews with other socially-engaged artists, curators and educators. An epublication version of these exchanges this will be available online in late 2021.

Brid Colleton

Assistant Artist

My practice involves creating mostly abstract works primarily through printmaking, painting, drawing and textiles. Some pieces are made purely through printmaking while others explore the interplay between all these processes.

Recognising the emerging next step while exploring these different processes often seems to be the most important element. Original ideas and plans fall away and a more interesting unknown direction is experienced. The quieter I become, the more I can recognise what these next movements are, what colour, what mark, what pulls me in that moment. I feel drawn to witness what emerges from that place of stillness and quiet. I believe no one to be more unique than another but possess our individual way to express our experience. I’m motivated to develop that potential to its fullest. This is the world I want to immerse myself in and what I’m attracted to in other works, that sense of potential fully developed and expressed.  

Kate Murphy

Lead Artist

Kate was born in Dublin but now lives and works in Co. Wexford. She graduated from the National College of Art & Design in 2000 with an honours degree in Fine Art, Sculpture. In 2006, 2007 and 2009, she had solo exhibitions with Stone Gallery, Dublin. Kate's fourth solo exhibition entitled The Good Room was in Wexford Arts Centre in 2011. Talbot Gallery in Dublin hosted This is the Point of Contact in October 2013.

Kate's work has been selected for national and international group exhibitions. She represented Ireland at Artisterium, Georgia's International Contemporary Art Exhibition in 2013 and was an invited artist at the Boyle Arts Festival 2014. She is among the artists representing Ireland in the Imago Mundi International Project.

In 2018, Kate exhibited at the Olivier Cornet Gallery, Dublin as part of the collaborative project Concerning the Other. During this year she took part in Wexford Arts Centre's exhibition of contemporary painting entitled And Creatures Dream... curated by Catherine Bowe and Helen Gaynor. Most recently in 2019, Kate's work was accepted into the RHA Annual Exhibition and Cairde Visual - the annual group exhibition at The Model Gallery, Sligo.

Kate will exhibit at BEEP Painting Biennial in Elyseum Gallery in Swansea, Wales in November 2020.

Kate was short-listed for the Golden Fleece Award in 2010 and was awarded the first prize Visual Arts Bursary by Wexford County Council in 2009. She was awarded an Artlinks bursary in 2017. Her work is in the collection of The Office of Public Works, the Bank of Ireland, Wicklow County Council and in private collections.

Kate also pursues a community/collaborative practice, undertaking varied projects within a community context under such programmes as Wexford County Council's Creative Communities Scheme. She worked for seven years on Wexford Arts Centre's Insight Education Programme during which time she also participated in the Living Arts Project 2014. In 2019 Kate completed the first artist's residency in Wexford General Hospital which was funded through Creative Ireland and Wexford County Council.

Lynn Haughton

Assistant Artist

Passionate about the great outdoors and about protecting it, Irish Designer, Lynn Haughton founded the multi-award winning community organisation The Upcycle Movement in 2012 to promote and inspire a rethinking of what we consider as waste - recognising this as a positive way to keep items out of landfill and contribute to a circular economy. On a mission to design solutions to combat textile pollution, Lynn provides new function to otherwise redundant materials, proving 'It's only waste if we waste its potential'.

Lynn is a qualified Interior Designer and Graphic Designer. She also has qualifications in Digital Marketing from DBS and is a graduate from UCD Innovation Academy in Innovation, Enterprise & Entrepreneurship.

Lynn completed the DCU Ryan Academy Female High Fliers programme and Sustainable Packaging for a Circular Economy and Circular Economy An Introduction courses with TU Delft, Netherlands. Most recently, she completed Circular Fashion: Design, Science and Value in a Sustainable Clothing Industry with Wageningen University & Research.

She offers talks and workshops in schools and universities about finding economic value in otherwise wasted materials in our communities, and also upcycling workshops.