Limerick Artists for Ukraine exhibition will take place on Thursday, April 28 at Limerick School of Art & Design. Pictured is ‘Vigilance IV’ by Robert Downey, LSAD graduate.
UPDATE: The Limerick Artists For Ukraine fundraising website finally closed on May 18 with almost everything sold!
Over 100 Irish artists partook in the hugely successful Limerick Artists for Ukraine fundraising exhibition, with over €50,000 raised for the Irish Refugee Council.
The organisation has played a key role in assisting Ukrainian people arriving in Ireland from the war-torn country.
Following the closure of the exhibition on April 28, many volunteers were involved in the effort to arrange and distribute the purchased artwork.
The organisers of Limerick Artists for Ukraine have been invited by the Ukrainian Embassy in Ireland to present the €50,000 cheque to the Irish Refugee Council in the presence of the Ukrainian Ambassador next month.
Organiser Moya Ni Cheallaigh commented, “I would like to say a massive thank you to all of you for so generously donating your work and helping make this event the sort of event I’ve been told that people will remember proudly that they were part of in the years to come.
“I think, speaking as a blow-in, that Limerick has a unique community spirit and it really showed in this collective effort.”
Well done to all involved in this heroic fundraising event!
The ‘Limerick Artists for Ukraine’ exhibition has seen a display of generosity from Limerick locals
By Moya Ní Cheallaigh
When my neighbour Nuala Reddan asked me if I would be happy to organise an art event for Ukraine, I said yes, thinking it would be lovely to have a small local event. I’m a former primary school teacher and I was very concerned about the Ukrainian children and all the needs they have, so the cause particularly resonated with me.
The original intention was to have Limerick Artists for Ukraine in Shannon Rowing Club but within a week, a bigger venue for the April 28 event was needed as Limerick artists responded with unbelievable generosity to my phone calls asking them to help out. It was so nice to have so many conversations and hear the same phrase over and over again; “We want to do something.”
At this stage, as it was getting to be a much larger event than I had ever organised before, I asked a friend of mine, Samira Kaissi, to help. Samira, originally from Lebanon by way of the USA, is a businesswoman and to my huge relief, completely took over the business and financial side of things as well as helping me enormously in other ways. We were thrilled when John Hellewell from seemybusiness.ie offered us a website without charge, and when I rang Ken Coleman about doing our graphics, he was so enthusiastic and helpful we knew we had a great team! Catching Helen O’Donnell formerly of The Hunt Museum, at the very start of her new events catering gig Dolmen Catering, was absolutely the icing on the cake!
Limerick School of Art and Design stepped in after I explained my need for a bigger venue and I’m very grateful to Mike Fitzpatrick for his assistance with this. Rita O’Brien from Sigcomms.com also volunteered to advise on website content and when we were up and running online, Emma Healy and Maria Donoghue took over social media. The unstinting efforts of all of these people, along with the contributions from the artists, has been a crucial element to the success of this venture.
Many businesses around the city chipped in to help us out with services and sponsorships and artists Maurice Quillinan and Michael Canning were at the end of the phone every time I had a question. Limerick Printmaker’s Tadhg and LSAD Printmaking Department’s Des Mac and Alan hung the show and Art Mad transported the work.
Neighbours drove over to the Radisson and the Maldron to bring eight car loads of our guests from Ukraine to a preview tonight. Artists and other businesses donated raffle prizes and all our sponsors are featured online along with the work of our artists. The Limerick Camera club gave Samira all their photographs from a recent competition for us to sell too!
The generosity of Limerick people is incredible. The team involved are all extremely grateful to everybody who has helped us out. The art is for sale minus gallery commission of up to 50% so the public won’t have to dig too deep to buy really beautiful art for a really wonderful cause. Any work not sold on Thursday, April 28 will be on sale online for the month of May with all money raised going to the Irish Refugee Council to support our refugees here in Ireland.
Katerina, a fine art photographer from Ukraine whose work is among several Ukrainian artists featured in our show, sums it up very well – “The people of Ireland saved my life and art saves my soul”.
To find out more about the Limerick Artists for Ukraine exhibition, go HERE
For more art stories, go HERE
Pictures: Ava O’Donoghue/ilovelimerick