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Past exhibitions

Visual arts at Birr Theatre & Arts Centre

From it's inception, the mission of Birr Theatre & Arts Centre has been to bring the arts to the heart of Birr community without limitations. Our foyer is a magnificent space full of light and ideal for locals to discover visual artists, engage with their works and discuss their ideas.

Over the years, Birr Theatre & Arts centre has hosted numerous exhibitions in this space, and we would like to offer a glimpse of the visual art history of our theatre.


Click on to explore the art!

Hazel Greene

Aspects', featuring the works of Offaly based figurative artist, Hazel Greene, was on show in July and August 2023


Greene's artistic vision is inspired by the concept that our cultural and natural surroundings influence us constantly, and her works with reduced observed drawings reflect this idea in a striking and unique way.

The exhibition features a diverse range of artwork, including drawings, watercolour and ink paintings, and large collage wall hangings on linen.

Each piece of artwork takes visitors on a journey through her imaginative creations, allowing them to experience the cultural and natural influences that shape our daily life in a new and unique way. 

click on nthe link below to discover 'Aspects', a captivating exhibition that is not to be missed!

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Niki Purcell

"The sky holds a fundamental attraction for me and acts as a stage that showcases the force and power of the elements, it humbles us with our smallness yet connects us with the immensity of nature..."

Welcome to "Elemental," an exhibition by Niki Purcell, where you can immerse yourself in the dramatic beauty of the natural world!

The beauty of Purcell's art lies in its ability to convey not just objective reality, but also the subjective emotions and responses to the natural world.

As you move from one painting to the next, you'll be transported to a world of drama that changes daily or even hourly, with each artwork expressing the shifting emotions and responses to the artist's surroundings.

Whether you're an art lover, a nature enthusiast, or simply seeking a moment of beauty and contemplation, come and experience the power of nature in all its glory, and be reminded of the importance of our connection with it.

Janet Mercer
Between the sea and the sky

‘My work is rooted in the west of Ireland landscape, inspired by the sculptural forms of the mountains, rocks and both natural and man-made structures, which reveal the contours of the land.

I am more interested in the abstract, sculptural qualities in the landscape than in representing a picturesque view.

I am inspired by the robust solidity of the rocky landscape of Connemara and the Burren, and how the ever-changing light highlights solid forms, contours and texture, while at other times, light and mist dissolves the forms, rendering them ephemeral.

Whatever the conditions, the mountains and rocks are a permanent presence, as old as the world itself, witness to our lives and activities, whether these have a significant or negligible impact on the landscape around us. 


Vincent Devine : Pause...

Nearly all of the "Ambigutrees" painting exhibited in this series contain hidden shapes in the tree or branches. Some are symbolic and some literal.

The hidden shapes in the trees also ask the viewer to search and spend time on the paintings for longer. This is a commentary on how sometimes artwork can be skimmed over and judged on just a purely visual spectrum.


The reward for standing and allowing the painting to occupy your mental and physical space then gives the visual reward that there are more to these “trees” than meets the eye with the shapes becoming apparent after a time.

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Eve Parnell : 
An Léas Solais / The Sunbeam

This is a collection of intricate, attractive drawings in which the single graphite pencil is used to maximum effect. Their visceral compositions highlight Eve’s confident technique, producing exquisite, limited-edition prints on Hahnemuehle paper with archival inks.

Accompanying selected drawings is a short poem, inspired by the work, written by Caoimhín Mac Unfraidh. Some of the poems are so dependent on the corresponding piece that they cannot stand alone and require the artwork to be viewed while the poem is read to be coherent.

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St Brendan's Community School
Art Department Showcase

For the past 22 years Birr Theatre & Arts Centre has fostered interest in the arts and encouraged visual artists of the future. That is why we are so passionate about our annual showcase with St Brendan's Community School.
Since 2010, working with the school's Art Department, we host an annual Student Art Exhibition showcasing a selection of student’s work giving young artists a place to showcase their budding talents.


Here we look back at a selection of these projects, examine the work process and hopefully we reveal a glimpse of how we can encourage students to be creative, explore self-expression and develop an appreciation for artistic work (their own or that of others). 

Common Ground 2021

For the 14th Annual Common Ground – an exhibition of work by artists living in the Midlands - we settled on the theme of "On The Farm"...


A theme that has inspired artists since the Mesolithic era when nomadic tribes stopped moving and began to plant crops and raise domesticated animals. Crops grown in rows impacted the design patterns seen in paintings, weavings, ceramics, and jewellery.

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