Search on for Donegal over-70s who fancy having their portrait painted

Conversations in Portrait - a novel response to the Covid-19 lockdown

Search on for Donegal over-70s who fancy having their portrait painted

Artist Andy Parsons painting Maisie, a sitter from Roscommon

Donegal Age Friendly, in partnership with Donegal County Council Culture Division and portrait artist Andy Parsons, is looking for participants for a Creative Ireland Creativity in Older Age Virtual Portrait Sitting.

The project is currently taking place in four local authority areas in the North West – Donegal, Roscommon (Project Leader), Leitrim and Sligo.

They are looking for people in County Donegal, over age 70 who are in a care home or cocooning at home, missing their cultural activities and interested in making new connections at this time.

During these sessions, which will be conducted online through Zoom, Andy will create an artwork while getting to know each person and how they have responded to the last few months of Covid.

In return for their time, the portraits will be delivered to the sitters who may display them in their own homes, for the enjoyment of family, friends and staff.

Portraits will also be exhibited in digital form on Donegal Age Friendly, Donegal County Council and Age & Opportunity's Bealtaine Festival websites and Facebook pages.

To take part, you would need to have some way to access a computer or phone for a video zoom call, even if just for two to three mornings.

If you want to take part and don’t have access to a computer or phone, Donegal Age Friendly Programme will work with the individuals to get them set up.

There are four places available and they are hoping for a balance of people living at home or in a care home in the county, male and female.

Please register interest by e-mailing: mairead.cranley@donegalcoco.ie by the morning of Friday week, October 16 with the subject ‘Conversations in Portrait’

They will require details of the participant’s name, age and place of residence. Note there will be two-three sittings of approximately 60-90 minutes.

Andy Parsons has wide experience of working with older people and of working in care settings. He is currently the Artist-In-Residence at Sligo University Hospital, while last year he led a very successful Age & Opportunity-managed Artist’s Residency at Killybegs Community Hospital.

There he worked with residents and staff on a project exploring traditional hand crafts common to south and south-west Donegal.

You can see more information about Andy’s work with Age & Opportunity here: http://bealtaine.ie/news/show/conversations_a_virtual_portrait_project_with_andy_parsons

A partnership project by Roscommon, Sligo, Leitrim and Donegal Local Authorities and Age & Opportunity as part of the Creative Ireland Creativity in Older Age.

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