Abstraction Workshop 2021

Ballinglen Arts Foundation, Ballycastle, Co. Mayo, Ireland

Three Day Painting Workshop:  4th - 6th, September, 2021




This is a painting workshop focused, not on a particular technique, but on exploring the world of abstraction.

Immersed in this unique environment, delve into the real unseen.

Ballycastle and the surrounding rural area is steeped in history, mythology and natural wonder. An immersed experience of it all enriches creativity. Abstraction, as a form, allows for the expression of a myriad of situations and energies. To step into this unknown territory we will gather sensory information, loosen up the hand and get inspiration flowing.

The requirements are curiosity and openness to experimentation. It is especially useful for those in transition, those facing a creative block, anyone who would like to expand horizons or those, like me, truly passionate about abstraction!

Daily assistance will be given in the execution of work in the form of morning group sessions. The aim of the weekend immersion is to create a situation in which you gather precious internal resources, prompted by the working and outside environment, and possibly unearth the impetus for a lifetime of work.

There will be an emphasis on collection of information, flights of fancy, profound realisation. The resulting work can take any form; painting on paper, notebook work and drawing will be encouraged as starting points.

The weekend will be comprised of morning meetings, walks, time to work in studio, slide presentations and communal dinners.





Registration includes:
- workshop tuition for 3 days and shared studio space with tuition beginning on Saturday 4th September at 9am to Monday 6th September before dinner at 6 pm.  Departure on Tuesday 7th Sept.
- private room from Sept 4th to the morning of the Sept 7th 2021 in fully equipped self-catering cottage/house in Ballycastle town.
- lunch/dinner/dessert/tea/coffee,
-transportation to and from Ballina, (a shopping town with a population of about 9,500 is about a half hour from Ballycastle, a village of 350).
- $650- (€550-)


email Una Forde at Ballinglen Arts Foundation unaforde.baf@gmail.com
or phone +353 96 43 184

you can email me with questions about class content or materials.
email: nualaclarke@gmail.com




The Instructor:

I am an Irish artist who lived and worked in New York City for two decades. In 2007 I received a fellowship to The Ballinglen Arts Foundation in Ballycastle. So taken by the atmosphere of the area that I moved to live in Ballycastle in 2013. Educated at the National College of Art and Design in Dublin. I am represented by Sara Nightingale Gallery in New York, have exhibited in Dublin, Europe and the US. I received Arts Council funding in 2020 for a series of videos. Recent shows include
'The Sky is Blue' VISUAL Carlow (2020); RHA Annual Exhibition, Invited Artist 2020; Experiments and Considerations Touching Colours, Custom House, Westport (2019); Ou Topos, Claremorris Gallery (2018); As above so below, Linenhall Arts Centre, (March 2017), A Yeats inspired show at the Hamilton Gallery, Sligo and invited to show at the RHA annual exhibition (2013). FIND, a temporary public art project, Castlebar, Co. Mayo (2014). Hamilton Gallery, Sligo, El Ateneo, Madrid, Catherine Hammond Gallery, Cork, Museum of Country Life, Co. Mayo (2015); Amid a Space Between: Irish Artists in America at the SFMoMa Artists Gallery, San Francisco (March 2012) Spoke at The Robert Boyle Summer School, Waterford. I am on the board of The Yeats Society in Sligo.

I have taught at the New York Open Center, the Interdependence Project, The Museum of Country Life, Mayo and to small groups of painters in NYC and Ireland. My teaching style, based on professional experience, focusses on strengthening the students relationship to personal vision.



The mission of the Ballinglen Art Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the support of visual artists, is to bring artists on residency from around the world and to introduce them to the majestic beauty of coastal northwest Ireland and the unique culture and hospitality of its people.



Workshop participants will have full access to the purpose built shared workshop space at any time of the day or night, internet connection and use of the common rooms.

The Ballinglen Centre offers an extensive art reference library, gallery area, an archive collection of over 800 works and knowledgable staff available for guidance during office hours.




Travel Information:
- travel to Ballina, Co.Mayo
by bus (buseireann.ie)
or train (www.irishrail.ie)


The workshop fee does not include bus/rail transport, but does include transport to and from Ballina for your arrival and departure.


Additional Details:
Ballinglen Arts Foundation is located in the rural town of Ballycastle, County Mayo.
There are obvious marks of continuous habitation for 6000 years in this part of the country. see Ceide Fields (a 6000 year old Neolithic site)
The beach is about a mile from the town and there are numerous loop walks that are easily accessed.

For photos and much more information, please visit Ballinglens Facebook page




WEATHER! There is no bad weather only the wrong clothes for the weather we have! Layers, hat, scarf, gloves, a waterproof jacket, trousers makes life easier. wool socks if you have them. the average temp in Oct/Nov is between 40 and 50 degrees F. The centre and the workshop building are well heated but outdoor weather can be "changeable" !