The Drogheda Port Company Art Commission 2023 winner was Ms Gill McCulloch.
A native of Mornington, Gill McCulloch graduated from Crawford College of Art and Design in Cork, having specialised in Printmaking. She has taught art at primary and secondary school levels and illustrated books, in addition to developing her own work, including numerous and varied commissions. Gill has a wealth of experience and she to brings this to her popular classes at ‘Art House’ in Mornington, which she established in 2006.
Gill’s original art works are strongly inspired by air and water and her surroundings, in particular the East Coast, and are ranging in a variety of subjects, from seascapes to still life, often incorporating historical buildings, stories and imagery. Gill predominantly works in oil paint but also uses acrylics and traditional printmaking techniques. Gill's paintings and prints have been bought privately and corporately and hang in homes and boardrooms all around the world.
To induce her creativity for this painting Gill needed to connect with her natural environment. Gill remarked, ’To create this piece I immersed myself in an exploration of the natural beauty of the estuary and the history it holds. Living and painting within a short distance of the subject, I viewed the estuary daily, taking in all the different colours, textures and changing tides, and how the light changing daily, even hourly created so much diversity. I chose this particular view or aspect not only for its sheer beauty but for the hundreds of years of history it beholds.’
An important element of Gills piece is the Mornington Beacon, one of many beacons that have guided marine traffic along the Boyne estuary for centuries. Gill wanted to convey her own fond memories of this captivating view in her work, ..’ I always need a strong connection between my work and the natural environment, and as this view has such fondness and familiarity to me personally and to people locally I really wanted to represent this in the painting.’