ISBN: 9780853318620 • Publication: March 28, 2003
A Celtic Artist
Jack O'Sullivan and Sophie Bowness
DescriptionBreon O'Casey, artist and craftsman, had an early introduction to artistic brilliance. Colour reproductions of works by Europe's modern masters filled his childhood homes. There, his father, the great Irish dramatist, Sean O'Casey, who dreamed himself of being a painter, paid tribute to Cezanne, Gauguin and Van Dongen. In this private sphere, the playwright demonstrated his own conviction that, despite great achievements in words, Ireland's cultural revival was found lacking in the visual arts.
Small wonder that his son, Breon, imbued with his father's love of experimentation, has brought a fresh Celtic vision to the fields of painting, sculpture, printmaking, jewellery and weaving. Having served his apprenticeship under Barbara Hepworth, he is perhaps one of the most versatile artists of the St Ives school.
In a study, featuring 79 colour illustrations, Jack O'Sullivan explores the connections between family, Celtic culture and modernism that make Breon O'Casey such an extraordinary figure. Sophie Bowness provides fascinating insights into his development and his place in the artistic landscape. Meanwhile Breon O'Casey, in his own words, sums up his myriad influences, such as the story of Tristan, the Cornish warrior, and his Hibernian princess, Isolde. He has woven a vision, which, like this ancient tale, draws together the diverse threads binding Ireland with Britain's Celtic fringes.