Secrets of Offaly

Secrets Of Offaly Exhibition Assembly

Offaly County Council’s public art projects under the title “Secrets of Offaly” are to be presented as a joint exhibition for the first time this February after having had their own local showings in Clara Kinnitty and Clonbullogue in 2015. Representing the three municipal districts of Offaly, the projects highlighted Clonbullogue and scientist John Joly, Kinnitty and its link with silent movie director Rex Ingram and Clara’s industrial founders the Goodbody family; each of whom made a lasting impact in their communities during the early twentieth century.  Interestingly all  three families give an insight into life in Offaly during the time of the Rising, presented in creative context for the centenary celebrations in the county.

Each project involved a group from the community and also a professional artist. Mayo based artist Amanda Rice created an interactive installation and held a presentation in Clonbullogue which centered on the Joly family, namely John Joly, who developed a method of extracting radium and applied it in the treatment of cancer. In Kinnitty a serious of workshops and talks led by theatre-maker Ciaran Taylor culminated in a day of silent film recreation based on the life and work of Hollywood director Rex Ingram who spent his teenage years living in the village. To complete the trio of secrets, Clara Musical Society and renowned composer Tom Lane collaborated to produce a sound installation akin to a giant harp in Clara Meeting House. Made of the material jute, the installation reflected the legacy of the Goodbody family who established Clara as a manufacturing hub in the early 1900s.

The exhibition is opened from the 4th – 26th February, the launch of which takes place in Aras an Chontae Tullamore on Thurs 4th Feb at 7pm and all are welcome to attend. For more information on these projects please visit our Secrets in Offaly page or follow us on Offaly Arts Facebook page.

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