Taoiseach accepts Famine painting from Michael Flatley
Dancer Michael Flatley, who has become an artist, has presented one of his paintings to Taoiseach Enda Kenny during a private meeting in Government Buildings.
The painting, The Walking Dead – an abstract depiction of victims of the Famine – will be hung in the Department of the Taoiseach for the remainder of 2013, the year of the Gathering, and thereafter become part of the State’s art collection.
Mr Kenny said he was “delighted” to accept the painting “on behalf of the State and in recognition of the year of the Gathering in Ireland” and described it as “very striking indeed and the subject matter is, of course, something Irish people all over the world hold close to their hearts”.
The Taoiseach wished Flatley “every success in his new chosen path”.
The handover ceremony was attended by Flatley’s wife Niamh, son Michael St James (aged 5) and Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan.
Flatley said the painting, about 8ft high and 4ft wide, had been framed in London using wood from trees grown on his 150-acre Castlehyde estate on the banks of the river Blackwater near Fermoy, Co Cork .