Main Exhibition 2023: Connections

Opening Thursday 20th July
The Festival and Exhibition will be officially opened on Thursday 20th July in King House at 8pm

Times: 11am – 5pm Daily and at times of events at King House from 21st July until 7th August.

This year’s exhibition is selected by leading Irish painter Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh, with curators Sarah Searson and Laura Mahon and features circa 100 artists from across Ireland. Building on the great work of previous selectors, 2023 will see a strong emphasis on painting, and the theme Connections will be manifested through diverse artistic approaches and by linking newer generations of emerging artist with more established senior artists.

The magnificent setting of King House will yet again showcase leading artists from across the island of Ireland and continues the strong North-South flavour, earning it a place as one of Ireland’s most anticipated and prestigious summer celebrations of the arts. Showcasing over 100 artists, with a concentration on painting, sculpture, drawing and photography, Connections promises a visual thread celebrating the richness and diversity of Irish art that has characterized the exhibition annually over the past 34 years

The show is a delightful and joyous occasion, which highlights some of the wonderful artistic talent in the region and draws artists from throughout Ireland. It is an excellent opportunity to see and buy new work by some of Ireland’s new and leading Artists

Exhibiting Artists are

.Abigail O’Brien, Adrian O’Carroll, Alice Maher, Andrea Kavanagh, Andy Parsons, Ann Quinn, Anna MacLeod, Anna Spearman, Annette Gaffney, Austin Ivers, Banbha McCann, Blaise Smith, Brian Fay, Casey Walshe, Cathy Carman, Ciara Roche, Comhghall Casey, Cornelius Browne, David Smith, Dermot Seymour ,Diane Henshaw, Dominique Crowley, Eamon Colman, Eddie Kennedy, Eileen McDonagh, Elaine Byrne, Eleanor McCaughly, Elva Mulchrone, Eve O’Callaghan, Fiach Mcguine, Fiona Finlay, Fiona Mulholland, Fionna Murray, Frederic Huska, Gary  Coyle, Gemma Browne, Gwen O’Dowd, Helen Ryan, James Kelly, Jennifer Trouton, Jenny Jessop, Jenny Mahony, Joanne Boyle, John Gibbons, Julie Merriman, Karen Ebbs, Kate Oram, Kevin Mooney, Kiera O’Toole, Leona Kennedy, Malachy Costello, Margaret Fitzgibbon, Marielle MacLeman, Mark Garry,  Martin Lyttle, Mary McCaffrey, Matthew Gammon, Maurice Quillinan, Michael Wann, Mick O’Dea, Naomi Draper, Nuala Clarke, Olwyn Colgan, Orla McHardy, Paddy Critchley, Padraig Cunningham, Pat Harris, Patrick MacAllister, Patrick Redmond, Philip Moss, Ronnie Hughes, Samir Rana, Sarah Tynan, Selma Makela, Shelagh Honan, Sian Costello, Simon Carman, Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh, Siobhan Cox-Carlos, Siobhan O’Callaghan, Siún Nic Suibhne, Stephanie Deady, Stephen Loughman, Susan Mannion, Susan Montgomery, Tamsin Snow, Tinka Bechert, Vanya Lambrecht Ward, Vera Klute, William Murray, William O’Neill

See below for full catalogue.

Main Exhibition catalogue,


Stephanie Deady ‘Measure for Measure’ No.8, 2022 – Oil on birch plywood

Fergus Ahern Award for merit 2022 was awarded to John Rainey for “Venus Glitch”


Curators tour of Exhibition
Fri 21st, 11am, King House

A Walking and Talking Tour of Exhibition Highlights with curator and artist Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh. Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh graduated in 2001 from Fine Art Painting at the Dublin Institute of Technology. Ní Mhaonaigh is widely considered one of Irelands leading painters. She has exhibited extensively in both Ireland and abroad at venues including Limerick City Gallery of Art, Anthony Slayter-Ralph Fine Art, Los Angeles, Centre Culturel Irlandais Paris, Millennium Court Arts Centre, Armagh, Highlanes Municipal Art Gallery, and The Living Room Gallery, New York. Ní Mhaonaigh’s work is represented in numerous public and private collections. She is represented by Kevin Kavanagh Gallery.
Artist Highlight Tour with Anna Spearman
Sat 22nd, 11.30am, King House

FREE (booking advised) LIMITED NUMBERS, Duration 40 mins
A Walking and Talking Tour of the Exhibition Highlights led by artist Anna Spearman. Anna Spearman is currently working between Sligo and Dublin and has recently been artist in residence at The Harrington Studios, King House. Spearman’s practice explores how sculptural objects, the space around them and the viewer in that space interact as vital elements in a temporal and performative experience.  She attempts to transpose the joy and excitement of her day-to-day encounters into three dimensional forms and installation Anna holds an MA in Fine Art: Contemporary Practice from Falmouth University, a BA in Fine Art from Sligo IT, and a BA in History of Art and Sociology from Trinity College Dublin.

A Walking and Talking Tour of the Exhibition Highlights by Sarah Searson and Laura Mahon
Thur 27th, 4pm, King House


Cultural Producer, and curator Laura Mahon, is Visual Arts and Education Manager at The Dock. Laura has extensive experience in arts production, working closely with artists to develop talks, visual arts mediation programmes and exhibitions, at The Dock in Carrick on Shannon and throughout the region. Sarah Searson has a background in visual arts, curation, education and cultural policy and production. Sarah works independently and has worked in the region for the past eight years. Sarah and Laura have worked closely together and with Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh to select and produce this annual exhibition.  
My Cultural Life with Linda Shevlin, Curator and Producer
Sat 29th, 4.30pm, King House

Free (booking advised) LIMITED NUMBERS, DURATION 40 / 50 MINS  

Linda Shevlin has an impressive and extensive career in the arts, working as an curator and cultural producer in Ireland, Europe and world-wide. Linda has facilitated and managed fascinating large and small-scale visual arts projects, commissions, and exhibitions. Linda has curated Tulca Festival in 2018. In 2017 she was the invited curator for the Hennessy Art Fund, purchasing new works for the IMMA collection and also curated the visual art programme for Bealtaine Festival 2017/2018. She received the Arts Council of Ireland’s curator in residence award for three consecutive years from 2013-2016 working with Roscommon Arts Centre and Arts Office. In 2016 she curated Radical Actions at RMIT Galleries, Melbourne as part of Culture Ireland’s 2016 International Programme ‘I Am Ireland’ . Linda was curator of Meta’s Open Arts program from 2019-2022, commissioning site specific artworks in their offices across Europe, The Middle East & Africa and programmed Meta Art Partnerships in 2023, working with partners including Times Square Arts New York and Superblue Miami.