DOWNEY – An art exhibit by Irish artist Anne Rigney opens Friday night at Stay Gallery in Downey. Rigney comes all the way from Roscommon County, Ireland, the birthplace of John Gately Downey, this city’s founder.
Downey Councilman Mario Guerra met Rigney during his visit to Ireland last year, when Downey and Roscommon County became sister cities. He connected her to Downey Art Vibe about the possibility of showcasing her work and heightening the cultural exchange between the two cities.
After the logistics were set, Rigney fundraised in her local village of Knockcroghery, allowing her to transport her work to Stay Gallery.
“This exhibit is a great way to remind everyone the cultural commonality we share with another community 5,000 miles away,” said Gabriel Enamorado, Stay Gallery’s creative director.
Rigney comes from a family with an artistic background and has been passionate about painting from an early age. She paints because “colors are a language from the heart,” she says. “It is how the heart speaks without words to express. It’s simply part of who I am.”
The passion turned into a career, having studied art and design at Athlone Institute of Technology. After her studies, she continued to make art and was involved with a professional arts group called Working Artists Roscommon, and began to exhibit across Europe, including Germany, Scotland and Poland.
Her daughter, Cara, who studied business and arts management, has accompanied her to Downey.
Rigney’s exhibit is called “Moments in Time” and features a series of paintings that reflect the ephemeral nature of life. Rigney’s mixture of paintings, drawings and photographs are influenced by the colors of nature, water reflections, moon reflections, a recent trip to Tel Aviv, and daily life moments stemming from the heart.
“I feel I am bringing a bit of Ireland with me to Downey,” she said.
The exhibit opens Friday at 7 p.m.
Published: April 24, 2014 - Volume 13 - Issue 02