Stencilize X Kildare Village
Stencilize X Kildare Village
Each season the Kildare Village creates a unique and creative display throughout the Village using varying themes. This season, to coincide with the St. Patrick's weekend and Easter, Stencilize and Kildare Village have teamed up to bring to life a stunning display of native Irish animals and wildlife. For the months of March, April and May, Stencilize signature geometric animal designs will grace the facades of Kildare Village.
An exciting array of birds, animals and wildlife will be appearing in larger than life form throughout the village. The designs are fun and playful and have been placed in unexpected locations around the village. This is very much a celebration of Irishness.
The designs encompass Irish myths & legends and our beautiful and varied wildlife. There is such a diversity of nationalities living in Ireland right now and also coming as visitors who would not be familiar with these animals and their connotations, we thought it would be a great opportunity to showcase them to a global audience. Working with Anne McGinley, Head of Visual Merchandising, we devised the concept. Inspiration was drawn from the local area, stories and fables and our rich history.
Keeping in line with themes that run through Stencilize designs, we used contemporary geometric animal graphics, with crisp clean lines and simplified forms. My most recent collection has a lot of movement, flying birds and running animals that a create a sense of dynamism.
Stencilize animal theme
I have always been a big animal lover, something I left behind when I moved to Dublin and began working. College and the work filled the space where my love for animal was. It wasn't until I began creating stencil art a few years ago that revisited my love of nature and animals. Stencilize along with so many amazing new Irish brands were born out of the recession. It was such a creative time in Dublin, rents wear low so artist communities began popping up all over the city. I had been working in architecture and with creative design jobs few and far between, I decided to try my hand at stencil art. It was literally a blank canvas for me to create anything I liked, so I chose to focus on animal designs.
Animals played such an important role to me in my youth. They also form the rich tapestry of what makes Ireland what it is today. They are part of our history and heritage, they are hugely symbolic, animals appear in so many of the stories we would have learned growing up. I am delighted my designs are being used to help spread these wonderful stories a little further around the world.
The four swans represent The Children of Lir, possibly one of the best know Irish myths. It tells the story of the for children of King Lir who were banished to live as swans on the lakes of Ireland for 900 years by their evil stepmother Aoife. Robin, there are so many legends associated with robin, many of them are actually related to death. But people also take a lot of joy in seeing a robin as it signifies a loved one who has died is visiting them.
Robins are also a sign of spring and it is said that if you make a wish on the first robin of spring before it flies off, you'll have luck throughout the following year. They are very friendly little birds and Irish people are very fond of this little friendly bird.
Butterflies We have many species of butterfly in Ireland and many old Irish saying associated with them:, "Butterflies are souls of the dead waiting to pass through Purgatory" An Irish blessing: "May the wings of the butterfly kiss the sun and find your shoulder to light upon. To bring you luck,happiness and riches today and beyond". Butterflies also represent rebirth.
The fox is associated with adaptability, and was thought to be a shape-shifter. There are many stories showing the cunning of the Fox, not always to its credit, but it should be remembered that ‘cunning’ comes from kenning, meaning ‘to know’, without necessarily carrying slyness. The fox was said to be able to foresee events including the weather and its barking was said to be a sure sign of rain.
Hares: As it is March, the term Mad as a March hare is very appropriate, March is mating season for hares and they can be spotted leaping around field apparently having boxing matches. Mad.
Swallows are migratory birds, seeing them return of the swallow from Africa is an exciting time, it means the summer is on its way.
Magpies are very striking birds with black and white plumage, part of the crow family, the is a rhyme that accompanies seeing magpies. One for sorrow, two for joy, three for a girl and four for a boy. It is said that if you see a lone magpie, you should salute it or tell it the time to stave off bad luck.
Wolfhounds: From early childhood, children in Ireland are introduced to the Wolfhound through the stories of Irish Myth and Legend, most notably through the legend of CuChulainn. They are a symbol of Irish culture, heritage . The Village has two permanent wolfhound sculptures so we wanted to link to these fierce looking but gentle giants.
We have are two Stencilize horse designs on display in the Village. Being from Kildare myself, we were always surrounded by horses. Kildare is famous worldwide for its thoroughbred horses. The Curragh, my home area is historically renowned for horse racing and horse breeding.
I have been dying to work with pattern recently, I think having a
The shamrock design came from wanting to use a recognizable symbol for the St Patrick celebrations, a shamrock was the obvious choice. Over the years the shamrock has become a bit dated and in some cases a little kitsch. Using the Stencilize style we hoped to transform it into something a little more contemporary, with a bit of an edge, while not straying from the immediately recognizable form.