Midleton Arts Festival award for Contribution to the Arts in Midleton
Susan Herlihy of Crafty Hands Studio
The 2019 award goes to a wonderful woman, full of energy, and a passion for art and for the community. She has given a huge contribution to so many people for the past 13 years.
Susan started working with ceramics 23 odd years ago. She had converted her house in Scotland into a studio where she was working and teaching. Early on she saw how much the students were benefitting from being in a creative space and realized the importance of it.
She came back home to Midleton in 2006 and with a clear vision of what she wanted for herself and her community, and she started Crafty Hands studio.
Her vision: to normalize creativity in the the community through the medium of clay. To encourage wellbeing through creativity and to develop her own skills to be able to always have more to offer.
She has a strong business model and since opening her studio there has been a steady flow of thousands of children and adults through her welcoming doors. People come for years.
In her courses she teaches basics and glazes and clays which opens the door for students to go which direction they would like. She gives people a space to be free and a space to work.
She has Developed in her words “a creative place for the Midleton community to feel and understand the freedom of the arts.”
Her own works are beautiful and we were proud to have her exhibition in the Half Light Gallery for the festival.
The prize is a beautiful footprint painting by Belinda Walsh. It was her and Susan who started the first mid May arts festival, so a huge thank you to both of them for their vision and passion.