30 Nov 2021

IN PICTURES: Laois students create anti-graffiti artwork in Portlaoise

The Transition Year students at a Laois school have created a beautiful piece of public art for Portlaoise, aimed at discouraging graffiti.

This beautiful tiled mosaic is now installed outside Portlaoise Leisure Centre.

It is a collaboration between Dunamaise College/ Coláiste Dhún Masc and mosaic artist, Aidan Byrne of Make Mosaic.

Aidan was commissioned by Laois County Council to devise and facilitate a unique mosaic piece with young people in Portlaoise to discourage inappropriate use of graffiti on public spaces. 

The colourful work was created by painstakingly gluing tiny tiles together by the students who learn through both Irish and English. 

"We think the message reflected in the work can translate to all who see it," said Geraldine Wren from Laois County Council's Environment department. 

She explains how the artwork was created.

"The artist held an initial consultation with students and got an overview of current issues with graffiti. A mosaic design was drawn up and a programme of works was planned that facilitated the artist returning for several sessions to demonstrate
skills and to check on progress."

Dunamaise College Art Teacher, Deirdre Doolin was also able to progress the work between visits.

"The students did brilliant work and they thoroughly enjoyed it and engaged really well. They were delighted to be included in the design process and have their ideas represented.

"The finished product is a collaboration of all the parties and is beautifully finished and a credit to all involved. It is a lovely addition to the newly painted exterior of the Portlaoise Leisure Centre," Ms Wren said.

The public leisure centre is ready to reopen this November under new management and after extensive renovations.

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