Thursday 17 October 2019

Paul embraces the rain for his first arts outing

Paul O'Flynn lives in Newmarket and will take part in the Kanturk Arts Festival

Maria Herlihy

A Facebook post seeking out artists from Duhallow caught the eye of Paul O'Flynn, who lives in Newmarket, and he will shortly showcase his 18 paintings for his first-ever exhibition.

While Paul now calls Newmarket home, he was brought up in London but as he has family in the area, he opted to move to Duhallow two decades ago and simply never left. 

He married a local woman, Maria and Paul told The Corkman that when he first arrived to Duhallow it was "a big change from London."  

For 18 years he worked in Cork city as a graphic designer but two years ago he was made redundant. 

"When I was made redundant, I decided to work for myself and things are really working out well for me," said Paul. 

The Kanturk Arts Festival invites four local artists to display their work and he saw a notification seeking out artists for the festival. He applied and the rest as they say is history. 

Paul outlined that the concept for his exhibition is the weather in Ireland, or more specifically the rain, which he now has abundant of experience from living in the region. 

Indeed, the topic of rain in Ireland is used not only as an ice-breaker but it flows naturally from people's mouths. 

"The rain in Ireland sweeps in from the Atlantic Ocean via the gulf stream and the jet stream. Rain has shaped the landscape, the culture and it provides the first point in any conversation in Ireland," smiled Paul. 

Aptly the title of his exhibition is, 'Atlantic Rain - Interpretations.' 

It is a series of 18 paintings that creatively interpret various words, phrases and idioms associated with rain in Ireland. 

"As part of the exhibition, I want the public to be much more interactive with the paintings and to help me achieve this, each piece will have three titles. I'm asking the public to choose the title they think best interprets the painting," he said. 

He also described his work as being comprised of digital art along with fine art. 

When Paul isn't painting, he also dabbles in graphic design and likes to do gardening. 

"I am really delighted to do my first exhibition and delighted that the committee of Kanturk Arts festival have invited me," said Paul. 

Kanturk Arts Festival is now in its eleventh year and it aims to not just celebrate but equally promote the arts in the region.