Re/Imagining Birth

Red Couch Space, Courthouse Gallery, Ennistymon, Co. Clare (2012)

 

"I can testify that a sheela-na-gig figure can be a great help at birth.  As you can see, the vulva of the crouching figure is open enough to accommodate her own head. Such a sight is quite encouraging to a woman in labour."  Ina May Gaskin, midwife

 

In 2007 the internationally renowned midwife, Ina May Gaskin visited the Sheela-na-Gig at Kilnaboy, Co. Clare, this visit and her words about Sheela-na-gigs was very much on my mind as I created work for this exhibition.

This work imagined how childbirth was seen through the eyes of women in Ireland before medical intervention became the norm and also engaged with women's lived experiences of childbirth. It engaged with the empowering possibilities associated with early birth traditions and weaves renewed connections across cultures.

The exhibition consisted of paintings, a short film, 'Bearing with the Wind', sculpture, photography and I also hosted a Red Tent Event inspired by the book The Red Tent by Anita Diamant, and the organisation the Red Tent Directory 

Mandorla & Sheela-na-gig, Re_Imagining B
natural mandorla, Re_Imagining Birth Exh
Incantation, Re_Imagining Birth Exhibiti
Mandoral Flags from 'Bearing with the Wi
Bearing with the Wind (film still) Kilna
Red Tent Event, Re_Imagining Birth Exhib
Red Tent Event during Re_Imagining Birth