Limerick Art Society celebrate 70th year

Alan Owens

Reporter:

Alan Owens

LIMERICK Art Society, who aim to bring art to people of all walks of life, celebrate their 70th anniversary this year.

LIMERICK Art Society, who aim to bring art to people of all walks of life, celebrate their 70th anniversary this year.

Established in 1942, the collective of artists claim to be Ireland’s oldest society and have 80 members from all walks of life.

Throughout 2012, the society have planned a wide range of events and activities to celebrate their anniversary including art workshops and member exhibitions, while they have selected Limerick Marine Search and Rescue as their chosen charity for any profits they make over the course of the year.

There is a nice correlation in that the entirely voluntary marine rescue organisation are celebrating their 25th anniversary this year also.

Incoming chairperson Barbara Hartigan explains that the society aim to “encourage, support, advise and help our members to have the courage to be creative” and says that all are welcome to attend the various events planned this year.

“Art is something that can be taken up at any age, all that is required is the desire and the ambition to stop talking about it and start doing it,” explains Barbara.

“Being creative on your own can be lonely, it needs some like-minded friends to ask for an opinion, some constructive criticism and maybe even some problem solving. All of this can be helped by the members of the society. We can all learn from each other,” she adds.

The society was founded by the late Rt. Rev. Dr. Robert Wyse Jackson, while UL founding president Ed Walsh was a president of the society from 1971 to 1983. The renowned Limerick artist Dr Thomas Ryan took over from Mr Walsh and still serves as president.

This year, Barbara explains, the society are planning a new venture. They will provide on a regular basis a written passage, describing a particular scene, and will then ask budding artists to “visualize and then to create the scene as we see it”.

“On a selected night everyone will be invited to bring along their effort in interpretation and the original scene will be put on display,” says Barbara.

“This exercise will build our confidence, teach us to observe, challenge our imaginations and stimulate discussion, laughter and fun. Selected work from the various competitions throughout the year will be put on display and rewarded appropriately,” she adds.

Stay with the Limerick Leader newspaper for updates on this venture and see www.limerickartsociety.com for full details on the society.