Kearneys make it a family affair


FOR DECADES, members of the Kearney family have been holidaying in, living in or retreating to the Union Hall area of west Cork. They are a family of poets and philosophers, painters and photographers, so it’s no surprise the dramatic landscape has prompted an artistic response from various family members over the years.

It started with Ann Kearney – mother of the philosopher and academic Richard Kearney – who liked to paint and took her children to art galleries from when they were young.

Several generations of the Kearney family have looked to the rugged coastline of west Cork and its offshore islands for inspiration.

Anne Bernard Kearney first came to the area in the summer of 1978, a year after she had met her husband Richard.

“We’ve been coming back several times a year since. Richard’s sister lives here permanently and his parents also retired here. We always do art when we come here,” she said.

This weekend, the family have put on public display their personal creative responses to the area, gathering some of their art works in an exhibition called Mothers and Daughters.

The works include paintings, etchings, watercolours and photographs that represent three generations of the Kearney family.

There may be a fourth, as Sally Kearney explains: “There is one grandchild and it has been suggested she might have some drawings included as well. She is only three years old but that would make it four generations on display, as some work of our late mother’s is included.”

Mothers and Daughters opens at the Union Hall community centre this evening at 6pm. It can be seen tomorrow and on Monday between 2pm and 5pm.