West Cork Arts Centre is a resource for adults who are interested in the arts. There are opportunities for adults, art students and artists to further their education and experience of the arts and to network through projects like Life Drawing, Creative Writing, Painting and Drawing Courses, Masterclasses, Artists’ Talks, Seminars and Events. Many of which are available through our Artists in Residence public engagment Programmes, see residencies here.

There are a number of opportunities to explore Contemporary Dance through our Dance Programme 

Creative Carers at Uillinn
Wednesdays 6pm to 7.30pm
22 February to 29 March 2023
Book your place: 028 22090 /

CREATIVE CARERS at Uillinn is back for a third series in 2023. Artist Sarah Ruttle delivers six creative workshops for at home family carers on Wednesday evenings from 6:00pm to 7.30pm. The new term begins on 22 February and runs to 29 March. Previous attendees can come along for another term or you can start as new. The sessions are free to attend and no previous art experience is necessary.

Taking inspiration from West Cork land and coast, artist Sarah Ruttle will support Creative Carer participants to make both; small delicate wire sculptures and ink/watercolour paintings. Taking one or both of these ways of making, each participant will be invited to work towards making a small handmade accordion book.

We will think about to best use each material to achieve what we want. Workshops will include tips on composition and construction. Creative exploration is encouraged within a relaxed and supportive space.

Guest artist Tess Leak will join the group for two sessions to introduce the wonderful poetic form that is ‘haiku’. These short, meditative poems will become part of the finished handmade books.

Tyrone born visual artist Sarah is a graduate of Textiles from DJCAD Dundee, Scotland. Working across disciplines she uses textiles, print and illustration. She has been working on the Arts for Health partnership programme since 2008. Sarah builds creative connections through a combination of making and storytelling, while using a multi-sensory approach.

Sarah is the recipient of several Awards including from Cork County Council, Creative Ireland and the Arts Council.

Silent Language: A Mark Making Course
with Catherine Weld
Wednesday 19 April to 17 May, 10.30 am to 12.30 pm
Maximum of 8 participants, Fee: €150 for 5 sessions
Booking directly with Catherine Weld at or 085 8308918

This is a course of five weeky two hour sessions, exploring mark making with a range of media. It is suitable for any level of experience, all are welcome.

The term 'mark' applies to any material used on any surface: paint on canvas, ink or pencil on paper, a scratch on plaster, a digital paint tool on a screen, even a tattoo on skin. These are all examples of the use of marks. Marks are made in response to something seen or something felt and can be created directly from the subject, from drawings and photographs, from memory or from imagination. Mark making is a vital skill that is fundamental to the act of making art. Indeed, without marks, there is no art!

The five course sessions will involve a series of carefully prepapred exercises providing a structure within which participants will be able to explore and develop their individual language of marks using of a wide range of media: penicl, charcoal, ink, collage, paint and mono-print, at a variety of scales. The emphasis will be on process – this is an opportuniy to practice letting go of ideas about outcomes or finished work, and to push through psychological barriers. As participants gain in confidence and learn to trust their process, they will find that this helps with decisions around composition, tonal values and scale, and there will be many opportunities during the courses to experience this.

The small size of the group will ensure mutual support and trust. A short coffee break will provide an opportunity for discussion around an art related theme - probably using a short art film as a starting point - or chatting about a shared idea or experience related to art, which is always inspiring and enriching. The aim is that the courses overall provide time away from everyday life and concerns, to dedicate to creativity and enjoyment with like-minded people.

About the facilitator

Catherine Weld’s current work, the Fragile Island series, aims to distil the experience of being in the complex and beautiful but fragile and vulnerable natural world, as it comes under increasing threat from changes in climate and the ravages inflicted on it by man.
Paintings originate from constantly walking the land whilst making observational drawings that are refined and strengthened in focus and consistency to build a personal language of abstract marks. In the studio, the application of this vocabulary through oil paint, together with other media such as ink, pencil and charcoal, becomes the primary subject; working organically and intuitively, physical properties of colour, tone, line and surface are allowed to develop until the image reaches a point where it offers a conclusion in terms of visual balance, and has become imbued with atmosphere and sense of place.

The artist has exhibited widely including at the RA Summer Show in London, the RUA in Belfast, and the Vue Art Fair, RHA, Dublin, with the Catherine Hammond Gallery. Paintings are in the OPW and Cork County Council collections as well as in private homes in Germany, Switzerland, the U.S.A., the U.K. and Ireland.

As a facilitator of hospice-based, patient-led projects, Catherine Weld has shown work in London at the Riverside in Hammersmith and The British Museum. Between 2003 and 2011, she was artist in residence at hospices in Dorset, England, and Inverness, Scotland. She was co-curator at Blue House Gallery Schull in 2017 and 2018 and ran the gallery at Organico, Bantry where she had the opportunity to offer many new artists as well as better known names an opportunity to bring their work to a wider audience of locals and visitors, with a professional level of organisation and curation. Finally, she has been involved in three successful art-based fundraising events in support of the campaign to prevent the mechanical harvest of the native kelp forest of Bantry Bay.

Skibbereen Community Choir – Liz Clark
Thursdays 7:00pm to 8:00pm
Starting weekly on Thursday's from 6 October
Pay as you go €6 per session or pay for a block of 6 sessions for €30
No booking required

Weekly social choir sessions for everyone who would like to sing  - even those that think they can’t!

Liz Clark is an Ireland-based singer, songwriter, performer, and musician. Liz has recorded 5 full length studio albums of original songs. She has performed and collaborated throughout the US and Europe working solo engagements as well as collaboratively in a group and leading full bands. She has performed alongside the likes of Sarah Maclachlan, Emmylou Harris, The Counting Crows and others. Over the past ten years she has been working extensively in the Arts and Health context in which she developed a collaborative approach to the songwriting process in healthcare settings across West Cork. As part of the Arts For Health Partnership Programme, she developed The Starling Song Project which preserves stories and heritage from older participants in the form of song. From this work, she developed The Starling Band, involving 3 other singers and instrumentalists to showcase this music in a wider context outside of the hospitals. They have been featured at the Skibbereen Arts Festival twice and performed in pubs and concert venues throughout West Cork. Liz is the leader of a community choir and 2 HSE choirs for the wellbeing of staff. She is the host of a new podcast, produced by Arts For Health, discussing ways of working, inspiration, pitfalls and challenges in the arts and health sector."


National Drawing Day

National Drawing Day began at the National Gallery of Ireland in 2005. Now in its eighteenth year, the initiative has blossomed, with thousands of people taking part each year all over Ireland. National Drawing Day is supported by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media. Events, whether onsite, offsite or online, encourage and support access to the arts for all, regardless of age, ability or social circumstances.

Slow Art Day

Founded in 2010, Slow Art Day is a global event (more than 1,500 museums and galleries have participated) with a simple mission: help more people discover for themselves the joy of looking at and loving art.

Why slow?

When people look slowly at a piece of art they make discoveries. The most important discovery they make is that they can see and experience art without an expert (or expertise).

And that’s an exciting discovery. It unlocks passion and creativity and helps to create more art lovers.

Continuing Professional Development and Training

WCAC creates opportunities for artists and other professionals for training, networking, employment, creating new work, exhibiting work, dissemination of experience and ideas and creative exchange through Pre-School Arts Training; Arts and Disability training; Learning Days for Artists; Critical Discussion and Professional Development for Artists.

Professional Development for Artists

This part of the programme is about the individual artist and devising appropriate methods to increase their knowledge, awareness and skills. This may take the form of mentoring, bringing in professionals with specialised crew of knowledge and experience to mentor and work alongside artists of WCAC. We also support artists with less experience to work alongside our more experienced artists in a assisting, or learning role. Another key element involves sourcing ongoing appropriate and relevant training for artists and supporting artists to attend courses, conferences and seminars nationally and internationally.


Image: BAVA Film Course May 2017.Photograph Kevin O'Farrell

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