From the roof of the world to its deepest caves and oceans, extreme artist Philip Gray has pushed his body to the limit for his art.
But he will face some pier pressure in Cork this weekend during a public demonstration of his striking art as part of a special RNLI fundraiser.
A former naval diver, the Kinsale-based artist combines his passion for adventure with his love of art.
He has climbed to Everest base camp, trekked over Antarctic glaciers, spent weeks in the steaming jungles of Borneo, dived in the caves and cenotes of Mexico, and has used his adventures to inspire his work.
“My extreme journeys into the unknown bring new challenges that push the boundaries of my mind, body and soul,” he said.
“These voyages of discovery, sometimes dangerous, are a stimulus to drive me forward creatively and explore new worlds of emotional expression.
“With these explorations of seldom travelled places, I have found a new source of energy that I attempt to translate into visual form.”
He has now agreed to paint on Kinsale pier this bank holiday Saturday as the town hosts its annual RNLI raft run.
He has also agreed to let members of the public make a daub or squiggle on the canvas which he will then incorporate into the finished painting. It is hoped that the finished work will be auctioned later to help raise funds for the RNLI.
“Philip’s work is highly collectable and this will be a unique chance for people to contribute to a serious piece of art,” a spokesperson for Kinsale RNLI said.
The town’s annual Kinsale RNLI raft race is due to set off at 3pm from the Bulman Bar, with up to 20 homemade rafts competing for the coveted trophy designed by Dominic Dolan of Kinsale Silver, with reigning champions Kinsale Outdoor Education Centre promising a vigorous defence of their title.
The event will finish with a party on the pier with Glastonbury legend and White Lady Hotel DJ Anthony spinning the discs.
The town’s lifeboat station will be open to the public from 1.30pm on Sunday.
Irish Water Safety, meanwhile, has urged people to be extra vigilant this weekend, with August the most popular month for outdoor swimming. Spokesman John Leech said people can reduce the risk of drowning by swimming at lifeguarded waterways and within their depth.
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