Carving from the well of inspiration at St Canice’s Cathedral

TRANSITION year students at Colaiste Pobail Osrai launched a stunning exhibition of stonework at their school last Wednesday.

TRANSITION year students at Colaiste Pobail Osrai launched a stunning exhibition of stonework at their school last Wednesday.

Siona Nic Eoin explained that it was a combined project where the school had linked it with artist Aileen Ann Brannigan, a stonecarver based in Castlecomer. “The inspiration came from Talbots Tower which we pass by every day. The students spent three days collecting motifs from St Canice’s Cathedral and three mornings learning the traditional craft of stone carving which is dying. The students also spent time choosing which motif interested them and then they formed their ideas which they translated onto the stone,” she said.

Bean Nic Eoin explained that Portuguese limestone was used in the project and that old stone techniques were adopted. “I found out about the initiative by the National Principals and Deputy Principals association which encourages and fosters creativity and decided to choose stone carving because of the work done at Talbots Tower,” she said.

Transition Year Co-ordinator, Maire Ui Shluain said that there was ‘great excitement over the project’. “All the students feel like it was one of the highlightsof the year. The reactoin from parents, teachers and students have been very positive,” she said.

Principal Cathnia O Mhuircheartaigh praised all involved in the project. “I want to congratulate all the students and artists on the great feedback that we have got so far,” he said. Mayor of Kilkenny, David Fitzgerald also spoke at the launch. “I was fortunate enough to get a sneak preview around a week ago out in the artist’s workshop of some of the works and I was very impressed. I think that they are gorgeous,” he said. Chairman of the Board of Management, Cllr Sean O Hargain and Michael Parsons of the Association of Principals and Vice Principals also spoke and congratulated the students on the news that their works will be travelling to Collins Barracks in Dublin to be exhibited.