Saturday 7 December 2019

Orlaith's Stray Sod at Armagh County Museum

'Stray Sod', the exhibition currently showing at Armagh County Museum, showcases work created by Orlaith Cullinane during her time as artist in residence.

Since January, Orlaith, a member of Bridge Street Studios in Dundalk, has been given access to the County Museum's vast collection of diverse and interesting artefacts, a selection of which are displayed alongside her artwork.

In response she has developed a fascinating, multi faceted exhibition of paintings, drawings, and assemblages of artefacts from the collection.

Orlaith - who trained in London and Belfast and has held residencies in France, Iceland and Italy - regards her experience in Armagh Museum as a version of the Irish folk tradition of the fóidín meara or Stray Sod.

According to Irish folklore, the fairies sometimes put a spell on a familiar piece of earth known as the stray sod or the fóidín meara. Whoever steps on it loses their way until the fairies tire of their game.

'As an Armagh native, still very connected to the place, I felt a paradoxical sense of familiarity and the uncanny as I encountered the objects.

'The common object took on strange new perspectives.

The work I produced during the residency conveys this sense of layers of stories and the universal nature of human experience.'

The exhibition continues until February 22 2020 with a number of artist's talks, guided tours and workshops scheduled.

The project is kindly supported by the National Lottery through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Armagh County Museum and ABC Council.

The Argus