The Vanished

By Anne Martin Walsh – View Artist’s Profile ➤

As a Tipperary born artist the Sheela-na-gig has always held a great fascination for me. There were at least 26 of these female stone carvings in Tipperary, more than any other county in Ireland. The strength of these images of proud women exposing their genitalia, their baill ghiniúna, to the world is a reminder to all of the importance of the fertility of the female. She is a fertility goddess, illustrative of the inception of human existence. I like to believe that she originated from our pagan times, adapted by Christianity in the medieval era, and that she has a direct connection to the worship of Mother Nature. Symbolic of a matriarchal society which was a peaceful era in which the earth was held sacred. This work titled ‘The Vanished’ is an interpretation of one of the stolen Sheela-na-gig, but for me is also representative of the destruction of our eco system.

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Anne Martin Walsh

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