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WATCH: Donegal artist Cathal Mac Fhionnghaile featured in TG4 documentary

Donegal artist Cathal Mac Fhionnghaile will feature in a new documentary film featuring new and innovative work from various Gaeltacht artists.

Tearmann explores how the landscape, local customs and indeed the Gaeltacht communities themselves continue to influence a new generation of artists.

Featured in this film are Cathal Mac Fhionnghaile, Siobhán Ní Dhuinnín, Áine Ní Chiobhán and Johnny Óg Connolly. Produced by Aniar Productions, in association with Ealaíon na Gaeltachta.

Cathal Mac Fhionnghaile is from Inis Bó Finne. He was born whilst his family were still living on the island but was raised in Machaire Rabhartaigh overlooking his family’s home place. Cathal obtained his degree in Sligo and later his MAFA in University of Ulster. Throughout this formal education Cathal maintained a ‘grá’ for his home place and its people, customs, and heritage. This assimilation has happened over millennia, handed down, eventually reaching this artist who digests it and makes it visible through his own interpretation.

His sensibility is that of an islander and this unique perspective is demonstrated here through his art. Cathal is a multidisciplinary artist; he paints, draws, sculpts and more. Cathal’s projects include Athghabháil- Athghabháil denotes repossession, re-appropriation, repurposing, reconstruction. The ‘found objects’ from the shores of Inis Bó Finne metaphorically demonstrate a repossession of heritage. They are a comment on society’s destruction of our seas with plastic rubbish.

In repossessing them, the artist also celebrates the native skills familiar to the island community such as fishing and the like that have been honed to a modern sensibility. Bothóg- Cathal has positioned the bothóg as a place of refuge. In constructing this work Cathal has repeatedly folded tonnes of wastepaper by modular origami – a meditative, solitary, aeonian act. His dexterity and his chosen method of construction is recognition too of the artist’s skilled craftsmanship, a talent, and an aptitude he has engaged with since childhood.

TG4 on Culture Night, Friday 18th September 8pm

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