Following hot on the heels of the biodiversity mural, Clonmel Applefest presented “Brave” last Saturday, a special commission by artist Gerardine Wisdom whose works are nearly exclusively made with rushes from the River Shannon.
The sculpture aims to celebrate the “New Brave”, those people of all ages and backgrounds who work to create a better world.
Amidst an appreciative crowd and delighted children, the artist was praised for her wonderful, intricate work by Mayor of Clonmel, Cllr Michael Murphy. Theresia Guschlbauer, curator of the festival acting as MC, thanked the Mayor for his support and gave a bit of background to the genesis of the sculpture which aims to celebrate spirited and brave young people locally and throughout the world who try to make a difference in this fast-changing environment.
“Brave” was conceived in conjunction with TY classes in Clonmel who were asked via Zoom sessions and a live workshop to consider bravery in a modern context as well as who they would like to nominate as a symbol of a young brave person. Greta Thunberg, the young climate activist, was the most nominated by far and it shows how concerned young people are about the state of the planet that they chose her to sit on top of the equestrian sculpture, traditionally reserved for older, male war heroes. Sarah Furno, as Chairperson of Clonmel Applefest and local entrepreneur of Cashel Farmhouse fame, invited the audience to celebrate the diversity of people now living among us, from so many places and cultures in the world, many of whom are working on the frontline during the pandemic.
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