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Childhood dreams set free for Culture Night

Ballybunion artist Dave Morrison brings the childhood dreams of retired friends to life in vibrant works of art for Culture Night show

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Star woman Geraldine Scanlan from Listowel gazing in delight at the heavens from the safety of her spacesuit in the vibrant work of art. Photo by Domnick Walsh

Star woman Geraldine Scanlan from Listowel gazing in delight at the heavens from the safety of her spacesuit in the vibrant work of art. Photo by Domnick Walsh

Ballybunion artist Dave Morrison hanging one of the many wonderful images for the new show in St John’s

Ballybunion artist Dave Morrison hanging one of the many wonderful images for the new show in St John’s

Marian Relihan from Lisselton with literary wings unfurled in the striking piece she collaborated on with Dave Morrison, in background. Photo by Domnick Walsh

Marian Relihan from Lisselton with literary wings unfurled in the striking piece she collaborated on with Dave Morrison, in background. Photo by Domnick Walsh

Ballybunion’s Phil Scanlon long-held desire to be a pro golfer comes true in Dave’s action-packed image. Photo by Domnick Walsh

Ballybunion’s Phil Scanlon long-held desire to be a pro golfer comes true in Dave’s action-packed image. Photo by Domnick Walsh

Delia O’Sullivan immortalised at her leisure in her Ballybunion garden by Dave Morrison, pictured behind

Delia O’Sullivan immortalised at her leisure in her Ballybunion garden by Dave Morrison, pictured behind

Ballybunion’s Barbara Derbyshire with accordion in reality and in art. Photo by Domnick Walsh

Ballybunion’s Barbara Derbyshire with accordion in reality and in art. Photo by Domnick Walsh

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Star woman Geraldine Scanlan from Listowel gazing in delight at the heavens from the safety of her spacesuit in the vibrant work of art. Photo by Domnick Walsh

It's the type of heart-warming story that we need right now as members of the Ballybunion Active Retirement Group got centre stage in a fantastic and creative new exhibition by Ballybunion artist, Dave Morrison, which is currently being exhibited in St John's Theatre in Listowel.

The inspiration behind the exhibition is a simple one, Dave wanted to portray the retirees in a fantasy style either doing what they loved to do - be it playing music - or in a role or a job that they would have loved to do, Some for example wanted to see themselves as an astronaut or a professional golfer while others wanted something a little more out there.

"I wanted to portray them in a fantasy style so I showed them some of images that I'd done before which showed off my style and I told them that I wanted to portray them doing what they love doing," said Dave.

"They came up with some brilliant answers. One wanted a tightrope walk, another wanted to swim with dolphins and there was so many different ideas which was great because I had so much to play with," he continued.

After a lot of work behind the scenes between Dave and the Active Retirement members, everything was finally ready to go this month as each retiree finally got to see the work that Dave had created for each of them and according to Dave, well, to say that they were happy would certainly be an understatement.

"They were all sitting around in a circle chatting away and one by one, I showed them the different images that I'd made for them and their faces as they saw them, they just lit up. Every single one them, their face was just full of joy," he said.

"It was really emotional, for me anyway, because they've really seen what I've tried to do for them," he continued.

Adding to the occasion of the opening night of the exhibition was the fact that it was the first time that the group had been able to go out together since the onset of COVID-19.

The exhibition will be completely free of charge and will be running in the St John's Theatre in Listowel until Wednesday, September 30.

Kerryman