This year saw the passing of Debi O’Hehir, a friend and artist who exhibited in our gallery for over a decade. We continue to sell Debi’s paintings at the Lavelle Art Gallery and proceeds of these sales will go towards the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annaghmakerrig, County Monaghan, in accordance with Debi’s wishes. This is a residential workplace where artists can find peace and quiet to develop their work, together with the stimulation of working alongside artists from a variety of disciplines.
Debi O’Hehir – photo by Reg Gordon
Born in England, Debi grew up in Kinvara, County Clare. She studied fine art painting at the Galway College of Art, graduating in 1988. Debi worked for a time in England where she developed an interest in sculpture and began exhibiting her work in London’s Northcote Gallery. Debi returned to Ireland in 2001 to work at the Leitrim Sculpture Centre and she set up her home and studio in County Leitrim where she remained for the rest of her short life.
Debi’s great passion was horses which she realised in a large body of work. Her paintings are made primarily in ink on Arches or Fabriano artists paper. Each piece is infused with vitality and energy, demonstrating her mastery of these materials. Debi was a prolific worker and she divided her time between painting and sculpture, the latter comprising mainly of horses, intuitively formed in wire or plaster.
We were introduced to Debi in 2005 and over a ten year period, we came to know her as an artist and a friend. We are proud to show her work and she is greatly missed.