“HOUSE” art exhibition at Cultúrlann Sweeney

Cultúrlann Sweeney, Kilkee

The ‘HOME’ art exhibition will be held at the Cultúrlann Sweeney Gallery, Kilkee, Co. Clare: August 30 to October 2, 2021

This exhibit is in memory of Betty Cauldwell (née Counihan) – the artist who passed away in April 2020. Betty’s insightful eye and ability to capture the essence of her subject matter is truly reflected in this exhibit.

Betty left us a wonderful legacy to include the sea and the landscapes of West Clare of exceptional beauty. Born in Kilrush in 1926, the eldest of five children to Dr Dick Counihan and Enid (née Glynn), Betty was educated in Kilrush, Limerick and University College Dublin where she studied to become a dentist. Married to Peter Cauldwell, also a dentist, who wrote poetry upon retirement, they spent much of their lives in England. Both of their hearts remained on the west coast of Clare and they returned “home” as often as they could. Betty began painting in earnest in her fifties and continued to paint until her eyesight began to falter shortly after her husband’s death in 2001.

Betty was trained at the Lichfield School of Art and has exhibited with the Lichfield Society of Artists and the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists. She won several awards, including the Armor-Brown Prize in 1991. She also exhibited at Kilkee at the Krazy Krauts Gallery in 1992. As a result of this exhibition she received a number of commissions, mainly to reproduce these wonderful seascapes, rural images and portraits of Clare. She has worked in a variety of mediums: oils, watercolor, acrylic and pastel.

One of Betty’s paintings, depicting Moore Bay, Kilkee, hangs in the permanently exhibited Kilkee Library. This is an action shot from the Kilkee Air Sea rescue. The photo has been temporarily moved to a display in the library commemorating Caitriona Lucas, the Irish Coast Guard volunteer whose “sunrise” was on June 18, 1975, and whose “sunset” was on September 12, 2016, in search of a lost soul – a premature and deeply tragic death that all Kilkee remembers.

This exhibition captures the essence and growth of Betty’s life as an artist, from simple early sketches to extremely detailed and textured paintings. Some themes of the exhibit include coastal scenes from Kilkee, Lahinch Golf Course, fruits and flowers, portraits and unique works of art. Betty’s time is over but her art lives on and this exhibition gives attendees the opportunity to acquire original “local” Irish works and prints and to help others.

Through this exhibit, the family is seeking to raise funds for the local charity, the West Clare Cancer Center. All sales will be donated to this voluntary organization. Funding for the West Clare Cancer Center comes from their community through many different events held each year.

‘HOME’ at the Cultúrlann Sweeney Gallery, Kilkee, Co. Clare, August 30 to October 2, 2021.

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