West Meets West
West Cork Arts Centre - 3 June to 8 July 2017
West Meets West was an initiative by Uillinn, focusing on the work of three leading artists from the west of Cornwall: Philip Booth, Matthew Lanyon and Tony Lattimer. The initiative explored the historic links and similarities between the two seaboards - of Cornwall and west Cork - beginning with a shared megalithic culture, Bronze Age metal mining and trading, medieval fish processing and the establishment of the Newlyn colony of artists.
The Newlyn school was based around West Penwith and was followed by the St Ives School, started in the 1920s and 30s by Ben Nicholson, Barbara Hepworth and Bernard Leach. In Cornwall it was the quality of light, the natural beauty of the landscape and a way of life based on nature and the elements that attracted the artists. These same elements were replicated in the Atlantic peninsulas of the west of Ireland, but this was a remoter landscape and it was only in the 1950s that artists and craft workers began to travel and settle here in numbers, founding a colony which exists today.
photo © Kevin O'Farrell 2017
A number of events took place during the exhibition. Including a panel discussion with Philip Booth, Tony Lattimer and Judith Lanyon; an illustrated talk by Robert Harris, Chasing the Light - Why the Artists Moved West, you can watch it here; and a guided tour of the sites in West Cork with connections to Cornwall. You can watch the opening event here.