Pluid – The National Comfort Blanket
The Cowshed Gallery, Farmleigh Estate
27th August – 5th September 2021
Open 10.00-5.00pm daily.
Strictly by appointment. Booking on Eventbrite/ Pluid
Kindly supported by the OPW
Pluid – The National Comfort Blanket (@pluid.project2021) is a collective artwork made up of 1200 small square original artworks by 1200 artists considering the theme of comfort which will be assembled like connected crochet-squares and exhibited as our ‘national comfort blanket’. at The Cowshed Gallery Following the exhibition the individual artworks will be auctioned online in aid of Pieta House.
(Pluid, pronounced plidge is the old Irish word for blanket).
Claire Halpin and Madeleine Hellier, artists and sisters, in early 2021 during lockdown put out an open call to artists, crafters, makers and doers of all ages in all communities to create small artworks (6” x 6”) in any medium considering the theme of comfort. What has given artists and creatives comfort and solace during the challenging times of this pandemic? We launched the project on 1st February 2021 to celebrate St. Brigid’s Day, recalling in her story that her cloak grew and grew to provide for a whole community.
The response to the callout was astounding in numbers and diversity, with over 1200 artworks across a wide range of media and technique, from traditional to contemporary, from limestone to painting to drawing to textiles and lace, and every imaginable medium in between. Each artwork is accompanied by a personal written response about something that brought comfort to its maker during lockdown, providing insight to the ordinary and extraordinary in our pandemic lives; the importance of family, friends and community, the unusual joys found of living within one’s 5k; giving a renewed appreciation of the beauty of nature, gardens, pets and sea swims. Some also shared their difficult stories of loss and grief, being apart from family, loneliness and mental health issues. The responses come from a divergent representation across the country from all ages, and ability, from ‘new Irish’ and the Diaspora.
Pluid – The National Comfort Blanket – has unknowingly and unwittingly tapped into something that is definitely greater than the sum of its parts it is a groundswell of positivity: 1200 people connected creatively on the theme of comfort and what unites the work is the importance of art and creativity as a comfort, a solace and a salve, a space.