Tramore Coastguard Cultural Centre, Saturday 12th November 3 pm till December 1st 

Opening at 3 pm, Senator Grace O’Sullivan and Artist and Writer Corina Duyn will introduce the works and story behind the Puppets, Poetry, Paintings, Postcards and Books. All are welcome.

Members of the Irish Wheelchair Association’s (IWA) Dungarvan Resource Centre will be sharing their creative work during a three week long exhibition at the Tramore Coastguard Cultural Centre. Although they all live with disability or chronic illness, they would like to bring the focus away from ‘dis’, and focus on their ‘Ability’. This – Ability. At times society’s image of a person with a disability is someone who does not have much of a role to play in the world. They are labeled dis-abled (dis = taking something away) and are put into the ‘Disability Box’. The lid firmly closed…With this exhibition, and talk on the opening day, they hope to challenge this view a little.

Two years ago Artist and writer Corina Duyn joined the group, where IWA staff assisted her with the making of her sculptures. These whimsical creatures emerging from air-drying clay got the interest of fellow members and staff alike. In early 2015 she was asked if, by any chance, she could teach this art. This was the start of what is now fondly known as the Life Outside the Box Puppet Project.

With financial support from Create – Artist in the Community Scheme, the group created nine puppets from scratch and a scrapbook chronicling the process.

These puppets and their travel boxes, passports and suitcases will be on show during the exhibition, but are not for sale. However they (and their makers) are available to visit schools or other groups to talk about the experience of life with disability. What is for sale however is the wonderful Life Outside the Box book/DVD, blank notebooks with fun images of the puppets out in the world, and bookmarks. Proceeds from these will fund further Puppet adventures or art projects.

coastguard centreOther works included in the exhibition are by individual members: Locally themed paintings by Westtown-Tramore born Pat Coffey, and beautiful beaded and embroidered greeting cards by Kill resident Ann O’Grady. Corina Duyn will showcase her art, prints, postcards and books, including Into the Light, which was recently shortlisted for CAP Independent Publishing Award. Stradbally’s Amy Fitzgerald, author of The Freedom To Fly, will share her powerful poems/verses with positivity and motivational themes as framed pieces, and Christmas themed poems for friends and family. Also some unusual Christmas Cards available, so there is something for everybody!

Please join in the celebration of the Abilities of this diverse group of people.   The exhibition runs until the 1st December. For more please see www.lifeoutsidethebox-puppetproject.blogspot.ie or www.corinaduyn.com (includes contact details)

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