In a twist on speed-dating, artists from the Glasheen Arts Studio Programme in Cork City will stage a speed-portrait event at the offices of the Irish Examiner to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
They’ve invited romantics to bring their loved one along on the night and to sit for a one-off portrait.
They have also encouraged people to bring a memento of their relationship to help spark conversation.
And who knows? Cupid may work his magic and stoke the fires of romance.
The artists are all clients of the Cope Foundation in Glasheen and Montenotte and have a range of intellectual disabilities.
Under the guidance of arts facilitator Hermann Marbe, they have honed a very special range of artistic talents, exploring oil painting and sculpture.
As a result, Yvonne Condon has developed her own unique style of speed-painting portraiture.
Through her bold, brave, and brightly coloured art works, she can capture a person’s likeness and character in just a few minutes.
Katie Whelan has also developed a vibrant and energetic style of oil painting.
Mr Marbe said when he asked her one day what a particular painting was about, she replied: “It’s all about love.
“And this inspired next Thursday’s event. It will be the theme for the night. Hopefully people will see the art, and not the disability,” he said.
Some portraits will be completed live on the night. Other couples can opt to have photographs taken, with the artist referring to it over to paint a portrait for inclusion in an upcoming exhibition.
The ‘It’s all about love’ Valentine’s Day art exhibition and portrait event takes place in the offices of the Irish Examiner on Lapps Quay next Thursday, Feb 14, from 5pm to 8pm, and admission is free.
Meanwhile, Threshold, the national housing charity, will hold a Valentine’s night dinner in the Farmgate Cafe in Cork’s historic English Market.
Award-winning chef and restaurateur Brendan Cashman, who was behind Augustines, will be creating the menu.
All funds raised will help fund Threshold’s fight against homelessness.