Art attack

By Francesca Ryan

Yesterday I found myself at St Mary’s University College to see what artistic strokes of genius were being displayed in what is the biggest art gallery in Belfast.

As well as individual art exhibits, work is featured from the West Belfast Art Society, the Relatives for Justice Painting Class, the Welcome Trust at Divis Community Centre and from St Mary’s students.  A personal favourite from this collection was Mary Robb’s A Pause In Music, completed in oil but, sadly for me, not for sale.

The throbbing colour emanating from the World Political Icons collection caused me to stop dead in my tracks.  The art is the work of Phu, a self-taught artist from Ho Chi Minh City and features images of political idols. Steve Biko, James Connolly and Sitting Bull are just some of those featured in the spectacularly colourful images mounted on the lengthy corridor wall.

Further through the College are works on display from artists Patricia Taylor, Rebecca Deegan and Angela Ginn.

Pausing to look at the three pieces by Jim Fee, I was delighted to be interrupted by the artist himself who talked us through his creations.  Focusing on the two communities here, the pieces represent diversity and innocence and one depicts a local myth about the Titanic.  Created using various materials, including sand, Jim’s work does, as is the intention with art, tell its own story.

These are just some of the displays on show throughout Feile and I recommend the exhibits to anyone no matter what their level of interest in art.

Look out for other art and photographic exhibitions throughout the West including Coláiste Feirste, An Chultúrlann and the Kennedy Centre.

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