Artists

Artists worked across a range of artforms when responding to the Troubles

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Harvey Andrews

Harvey Andrews was born in Birmingham on May 7th 1943. He trained as a schoolteacher but began his singer/songwriter career in 1964 when he was paid ten shillings for singing three of his songs for the first time in a folk club. He turned full time pro in 1966. He has produced 15 albums of his own songs, many of which have been recorded by other artists. He has appeared at many festivals including Tonder in Denmark, Lunenburg and Regina in Canada, and five Cambridge Folk Festivals in the U.K. Tours have taken him to Canada, Newfoundland, U.S.A, Germany, Cyprus, Belgium, Ireland, Switzerland, Belize, Malta, Holland, Sardinia, Gibraltar, Italy, Portugal, Denmark and Ascension Island. Television appearances include The Old Grey Whistle Test, Rhythm on Two and over 50 other shows. He has made two television specials featuring his songs, The Camera and The Song, and The Same Old Smile. Tw

Conrad Atkinson

Conrad Atkinson was born in Cumbria in 1940 and worked as a teacher and artist using a varied range of media. He gained degrees from Carlisle College of Art, Liverpool College of Art and the Royal Academy Schools between 1957 and 1965, later winning a Granada Fellowship. Since 1992 he has been Professor of Art and Chair Dept of Art and Art History University of California at Davis . Currently Professor Emeritus. 2002 Distinguished Visiting Professor/Artist in Residence Courtauld Institute, London University. Honorary Fellow Cumbria University UK. Churchill Fellow 1972 He is represented by Ronald Feldman Fine Art.

Robert Ballagh

Robert Ballagh was born in Dublin in 1943. He has been painting on a full time basis since his first exhibition in Dublin in 1969. Ballagh’s work as a painter is represented in many important collections including the National Gallery of Ireland, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Crawford Municipal Gallery Cork, Dublin City Gallery, the Hugh Lane, Ulster Museum and the Albrecht Durer House Nuremberg. Major survey exhibitions of his work have taken place in Lund, Warsaw, Moscow, Sofia and Dublin. In 1991 Robert Ballagh was elected chairperson of the national organising committee for the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the 1916 rising. Also for 10 years, he chaired the national executive of the Irish National Congress, a non-party political organisation, working for peace, unity and justice in Ireland. The BBC produced a documentary on Robert Ballagh, which was directed by the p

Marie Barrett

The work of artist Marie Barrett has been primarily concerned with the development of innovative, process-based work in public space. Since the late 1980s Barrett has created a series of site-specific public art works, which have used processes of collaborative engagement and dialogue with specific communities. These projects have typically been articulated in a cross-border context, bringing together divergent community groups. The approach has been interdisciplinary, always aiming to combine the transformative power of collaborative public art practice with the rigour and analysis of in-depth action research. Over the course of an extensive and diverse series of public art collaborations certain persistent themes, communities of interest and locations have emerged. In terms of identity and location, projects have been cross-community, cross-border and also directly concerned wi

Bbeyond

Bbeyond began its officially existence in 21st May 2001 with its Constitution, hosting its first project, Place in the Market, in St. George’s Market during the Friday markets on 12th and 19th Oct 2001. Bbeyond has grown from a few people with determined interests to promote Performance Art, now we are a Membership organisation with a 30 strong members. Some of our most significant projects have been Place in the Market, Open Relations I and II, In Place of Passing, the 6 Exchange projects with Quebec, Finland, Norway, Canada, Spain and Germany. Other significant projects were I AM, East/West via Belfast, AIMing because it involved 3 veterans of performance art from Poland, namely Jerzy Beres, Jan Swidzinski (both now deceased) and Zbigniew Warpechowski. Other projects include, Chaos, Black Market, Duo Days and Triple AAA. To date Bbeyond has hosted a total of over 170 Activ

Ian Beatie

Ian Beattie is a Belfast born character actor. He is a graduate of Queen’s University and the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts. He has worked on many significant stage, television and film productions since the mid-1990s. He is best known for his role as Meryn Trant, Knight of the Kingsguard, in HBO’s “Game of Thrones”. His career has featured appearances in large scale Hollywood blockbusters, such as his role as Antigonus in Oliver Stone’s “Alexander”, to smaller scale intimate theatre pieces. Ove the past twenty years, he has appeared in a number of important productions, which feature the “Troubles” as their backdrop. These include Gary Mitchell’s ‘Marching On’ , in which he played a visiting Scot coming to Northern Ireland for the twelfth of July parades, as well as a powerful performance as Michael Stone in the biopic of Northern Ireland Secr

Mary Beckett

Mary Beckett was born in Belfast in 1926. She began writing short stories when she was 23, first for BBC radio and then for literary magazines in Dublin, Cork and Belfast. In 1980 Poolbeg Press in Ireland brought out a collection of her short stories, A Belfast Woman. In 1987 Bloomsbury published her first novel, Give them Stones, which has also appeared in America through Beech Tree/William Morrow. Beech Tree have also published A Belfast Woman. Her next collection for Bloomsbury was A Literary Woman, described by the Sunday Times as “a striking collection… immensely effective”. She has also written children’s books, including A Family Tree [Poolbeg Press] and Hannah, or the Pink Balloons [Marino].

Ronan Bennett

Ronan Bennett was born on 14 January 1956 in Belfast, Ireland. He was acquitted on appeal after a conviction for murder in 1974 but during his time in prison witnessed the burning of Long Kesh prison by republican prisoners and has described this in detail in radio talks. He was educated at King’s College, London, and was a research fellow at the Institute of Historical Research in London from 1986-7. His first novel, The Second Prison (1991), a thriller about a member of a group of Irish republican activists, was shortlisted for the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize for First Book. His second novel, Overthrown by Strangers (1992), is set in Latin America. The Catastrophist (1997), the story of an Irish journalist working in the Belgian Congo in the 1950s, won the Irish Post Literature Award and the Belfast Arts Award for Literature and was shortlisted for the Whitbread Nove

Tom Bevan

Tom Bevan was born in Belfast in 1946. In 1972 Began working in commercial potteries in the Channel Islands, later switching to mixed media assemblage in the 1980s. Since 2000 he has been living and working in New York City.

Jean Bleakney

Jean Bleakney (née Kerr) was born in Newry in 1956, the daughter of a Border Customs Officer. Her family moved to Lisburn in 1973. She studied biochemistry at Queen’s University Belfast and worked in medical research for eight years. Following the birth of her second child, she chose to stay at home. Fear and loathing of housework triggered an interest in gardening and, much to her surprise, the language of gardening. Having exhausted the appropriate section of the local library, she discovered, a few stacks along, Wendy Cope’s Making Cocoa for Kingsley Amis. Interest piqued, she began putting words together and, in 1993, she started attending the weekly writing workshop at Queen’s. Her first collection of poems, The Ripple Tank Experiment, was published in by Lagan Press in 1999, followed by The Poet’s Ivy (2003) and ions (2011). Her poems have appeared in various antholo

Paul Brady

Born and raised in Strabane, Northern Ireland, on the border with the Irish Republic, Paul Brady was into a wide variety of music from an early age. A Fifties child, his first sounds were the Swing, Jazz, Show tunes of his parents generation. Then 50’s Rock ‘n Roll, 60’s pop and Motown, Blues, R’nB and Country and Western. Through all this ran the potent flavour of Irish traditional music and song. Learning to play the piano pretty much by ear, trial and error, his early heroes were Jerry Lee Lewis, Winifred Atwell and Fats Domino. By the age of eleven he had begun to play guitar, spending hours of his school holidays learning every tune the Shadows and The Ventures recorded, every lick Chuck Berry played. Mid-teens saw him take summer jobs playing piano and guitar in Bundoran, a seaside resort in nearby County Donegal. But it was around 1965 in Dublin, at college, that he beg

Building Design Partnership

Building Design Partnership, founded in 1961, is Europe’s largest interdisciplinary architectural/design/engineering/urbanism practice, working across many sectors, including education, retail, offices, industry, health care, housing, culture and leisure, and transport and infrastructure. BDP operates 11 offices across the UK and Ireland, with associated offices across Europe. BDP has a long-established office in Belfast which operated in the city throughout the period of the Troubles to the present; one of its earliest large-scale projects in Northern Ireland was the distinguished Northern Bank headquarters in Donegall Square West of 1970.

Ursula Burke

Ursula Burke is an Irish artist who works in a variety of media including Sculpture, Photography and Porcelain. Much of her Fine Art practice deals with issues of Representation and Identity within contemporary Ireland. She was awarded the Arts Council of Northern Ireland British School at Rome Fellowship in 2014. She has exhibited nationally and internationally, including SCOPE New York Art Fair 2015,2014, 2013 & 2012; Ex Elettrofonica Gallery Rome 2015; Transition Gallery-London 2015; Art of the Troubles, The Ulster Museum Belfast, 2014; Arafudo Art Annual, Fukushima, Japan 2014; March & June Mostra, British School at Rome, 2014; Spazi Aperti, Romanian Academy, Rome, 2014; Hope for a Better Past, The MAC, Belfast, 2013 & Instances of Agreement, Kao Yuan Art Centre, Taiwan, 2011. Her work is part of the collection of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, the Office o

David Byers

David Byers was the Manson Scholar in Composition at the Royal Academy of Music in London 1968-72, winning many prizes for composition and organ. The Macauley Fellowship from the Irish Arts Council in 1972 and a Belgian Government Scholarship then enabled him to study with Henri Pousseur at the Liège Conservatoire. In 1984 he was awarded an ARAM for his contribution to the music profession, and also appointed a member of the Irish Arts Council, An Chomhairle Ealaíon, for five years. He was a Governor of the Royal Irish Academy of Music for over 20 years and has served on many boards and committees, including Wexford Festival Opera, the National Concert Hall, Dublin, the Ulster Youth Choir and the Irish Baroque Orchestra. He was a founding committee member of the Sonorities Festival. After 25 years he retired from the BBC in 2002 as Chief Producer, Music and Arts, and was

Bill Campbell

Born in Belfast 1961, studied music at the University of Ulster Jordanstown gaining B.A and Master of philosophy degrees. Won SPNM regional award 1990 and the Cornelius Cardew composition prize 1992 for his string quartet ‘ The snow leopard ‘ Studied with Sir Peter Maxwell Davies 1993 - 94. He has composed music for soloists, ensembles and orchestras performed throughout the U.K, Ireland , Europe and beyond with many broadcasts on BBC, RTE and Slovenian national radio. Bill was appointed first composer in residence for Cavan county council 2001-2003. His CD during this period with the contemporary music group ‘Concorde’ and poet Dermot Healey was voted CD of the month by the Contemporary music centre of Ireland. He has composed music for film , theatre, installations and story books as well as working as a professional arranger for Einstein studios ( N.I. ) He has rec

Siobhan Campbell

Siobhan Campbell was born in Dublin but spent much of her early life travelling on the ferry from Omeath to Warrenpoint to stay with family for long stretches of time. Her latest book ‘Cross-Talk’ (Seren, 2010), ‘set in the wake of the turbulent Irish peace process’ – Poetry, follows two books from Blackstaff Press, The Permanent Wave and The Cold that Burns. She has published widely in the UK, US and Ireland, appearing magazines such as The Hopkins Review and Crab Orchard Review as well as Poetry Ireland, Poetry and Magma. Her work is represented in the major anthologies including Identity Parade: New British and Irish poets (Bloodaxe) and Womens’ Work: twentieth century women poets (Seren). She holds awards in the National Poetry Competition, the Troubadour International, the Wigtown poetry competition and the chapbook That Water Speaks in Tongues won the Templar Awa

Ciaran Carson

Ciaran Carson was born in Belfast in 1948. He graduated from Queens University in 1971, and later joined the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, specialising in traditional music. Ciaran Carson lives in north Belfast with his wife, Deirdre Shannon, and their three children. He won an Eric Gregory Award in 1978. His collections of poetry include The Irish for No (1987), winner of the Alice Hunt Bartlett Award, Belfast Confetti (1990), which won the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize for Poetry and First Language: Poems (1993), winner of the T. S. Eliot Prize. His prose includes The Star Factory (1997) and Fishing for Amber (1999). His novel, Shamrock Tea (2001), explores themes present in Jan van Eycks painting The Arnolfini Marriage. His translation of Dante’s Inferno was published in November 2002. Breaking News (2003), won the Forward Poetry Prize (Best Poetry Collection of the Ye

John Carson

John Carson is an artist whose work has explored various media, contexts and strategies. He has presented live performances, made soundworks and CDs, broadcast work on television and radio, created installations, and both as a curator and artist, been involved in many types of ‘public art’ project. He has exhibited drawings, photographs, prints and sculpture in such venues as The Ulster Museum in Belfast, The Douglas Hyde Gallery in Dublin, The ICA in London, CCA in Glasgow, IKON Gallery in Birmingham, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art in Australia, The Aine Art Museum in Tornio Finland, PS1 in New York, New Langton Arts in San Francisco and The Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh. He received his Bachelor of Fine Art Degree from The University of Ulster in Belfast in 1976 and his Master of Fine Arts Degree from California Institute of the Arts in 1983. From 1986 to 1991 he was Prod

Daragh Carville

Daragh Carville is a playwright and screenwriter. His plays, which include Language Roulette, Observatory and Family Plot, have been widely produced in Britain and Ireland, and as far afield as France, Germany, Holland, and the U.S. In 2014, he produced a play based on two of Britain’s early film pioneers: ‘The Life And Times of Mitchell and Kenyon.’ He has also written for television and radio. His radio play Regenerations, first broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2000, was nominated for the Richard Imison Award. His adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula was broadcast on Radio 4 in 2003. Daragh’s first feature film as writer, Middletown, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York in 2006. The film, which stars Matthew MacFadyen, Daniel Mays, Eva Birthistle and Gerard McSorley, was directed by Brian Kirk and produced by Michael Casey of Green Park Films. It was nomi

Ian Cochrane

Obituary by Maurice Leitch The Guardian, Thursday 23 September 2004 Ian Cochrane, who has died aged 62 from a heart attack, produced a critically acclaimed stream of six unusual, darkly comic novels through the 1970s and early 1980s. Each title attested to the author’s surreal and mischievous sense of humour, such as Gone In The Head (1975), which was runner-up for the 1974 Guardian Fiction Prize, Jesus On A Stick (1975) and Ladybird In A Loony Bin (1978). His first novel, A Streak Of Madness, was published by Allen Lane when he was 32 and hailed as “the creation of an extraordinarily gifted artist”. Earlier, there were stories in Faber & Faber’s Introductions Four and Penguin Modern Stories. Born in a two-roomed cottage in a remote, rural part of Mid-Antrim, Ian and his three brothers and a sister, like most others at that period in Ulster, went through some lean a

Brian Connolly

Brian Connolly employs a wide range of artistic strategies and processes including Performance Art, Public Sculpture, Installation Art, Collaborative Art Practice and Artist Run Project Development. He has created a series of Market Stall Performance interventions internationally since the mid 1990’s, where surreal humor is employed to question aspects of consumerism and global political and social ethics. He has also developed a new genre of Performance work generically entitled “Install-actions”, which are often visually elaborate and contain both political and spiritual metaphors. He is a founding member of Bbeyond and has had several directorial responsibilities within the organization since it’s inception in 2001. He creates solo and group performances & has exhibited/performed in diverse contexts within Europe, North America and Asia. He has also initiated and cu

Mary Costello

Mary Costello was born in west Belfast in 1955 into a Catholic, working-class family. She grew up in Andersonstown, an IRA stronghold, and experienced first hand the outbreak of the Troubles. She now lives in Australia.

Phil Coulter

Born on February 19th 1942, fourth child and third son in the family. His father was a constable in the Royal Ulster Constabulary from Strangford, County Down who played the fiddle. His mother, originally from the Markets in Belfast played the piano. Coulter says of his childhood, “Our house was always full of music”. He attended St. Columb’s in Derry and Queen’s University in Belfast. In 1964 and went to London where he got a job with a music publisher in Tin Pan Alley (Denmark Street) and after a few years linked up with Scottish songwriter Bill Martin. Coulter also played as a session pianist in recording studios or for concerts with artists such as Van Morrison, Tom Jones, Jerry Lee Lewis and The Rolling Stones. In 1967, one of Coulter and Martin’s songs, ‘Puppet On A String’, sung by Sandie Shaw, won the Eurovision Song Contest. The song ‘Congratulations’ w

Gerry Creen

Gerry Creen emerged from the vibrant Belfast folk scene of the 1960s and 70s. In his early teens he began playing mandolin, tenor banjo and guitar to accompany his singing in youth club groups and folk bands, such as The Gleaners. Gerry and Dessie Friel (father of Anna Friel) played in school concerts and coffee houses such as The Hobbit, The Ferryboat and The Boundary Bar, where they rubbed shoulders with musicians and singers such as David McWilliams, Den Warrick, Patsy Melarkey, Gillian McPherson, Sam Bracken and Dave Shannon and a host of traditional musicians all part of the vibrant traditional and contemporary Belfast folk scene. Gerry and Dessie supported The Dubliners and Johnny McEvoy at the Ulster Hall. When Dessie left Belfast for college in England, Gerry headed off to The College of Art at the University of Ulster. Gerry and Hugh joined Peter Millar and Sam Bateman to

Pauline Cummins

Pauline Cummins performance and video work examines identity, gender and socio-cultural relations connected to different communities in society. Her works ‘Sound the Alarm’ 1(2008), 2 (2009), 3(2010) and ‘Extracts’ Paris 2012, explore themes of power, powerlessness and the rights of the child to protection. Most recently in Between One and Another, (2012) with Canadian artist Sandra Vida, at the Irish Cultural Centre in Paris, and in the exhibition, It has no name curated by Liz Burns in 2013 in DIT, Dublin. She performed as Emily the Duchess of Leinster and as her son, Lord Edward Fitzgerald in These Immovable Walls in Dublin Castle in 2014. Her first performance was in 1988 commissioned by Projects UK , Unearthed, dealt with the Troubles in Northern Ireland. Cummins video installations have been exhibited nationally and internationally over the last 30 years. Her

Paula Cunningham

Paula Cunningham was born in Omagh and lives in Belfast.. Her chapbook A Dog called Chance (Smith/Doorstop) was a winner in The Poetry Business Competition in 1999. Her first full-length poetry collection Heimlich’s Manoeuvre, Smith/Doorstop 2013, was shortlisted for the Fenton-Aldeburgh, Seamus Heaney Centre, and Strong Shine First Collection Prizes. She has also written drama and short fiction, and has received awards from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Her short story ‘The Matchboy’ won 2nd prize in the Costa Short Story Award 2015. Individual poems have won prizes in the Hippocrates Poetry Prize, the Ballymaloe Interntional Poetry Prize and the Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Prize. Her work is widely anthologised and published in print and on-line journals in Ireland, the UK Europe, Canada and the US.

Colin Davidson

Colin Davidson was born in Belfast in 1968 and educated at Methodist College, Belfast. He graduated with a first class honours degree in in design from the University of Ulster in 1991. In 2003 he was elected an Associate of the Royal Ulster Academy of the Arts (RUA) and in 2006 he was elected as an Academician within the same body. In 2012 he was elected President of the RUA. His early work featured cityscapes, for example the city of Belfast being observed from high viewpoints, and a significant body of work based around urban scenes viewed through the reflections on glass windows. More recent work has focused on portraits, which make use of thick paint combined with a bold expressive style. He has exhibited widely, with significant shows in Belfast, Dublin, London, New York, Washington and Paris. Awards have included US/Ireland Alliance Oscar Wilde Award (Los Angeles), BP Portr