Artist Breda Mayock and photographer Orla Sloyan worked with Traveller/Mincéir girls to create personal portraits for this exhibition.
Irish Travellers or Mincéirí are an indigenous ethnic minority group that has been part of Irish society for centuries.
Artist Breda Mayock and photographer Orla Sloyan observed a particular characteristic of Traveller/Mincéir women and girls: the unique and very creative way in which they express themselves through their hair. Indeed, hair is recognised universally as a powerful symbol of individuality, and hairstyles and rituals surrounding hair-care can convey powerful messages about a person’s beliefs and lifestyle.
Breda and Orla worked with Traveller/Mincéir girls to create the personal portraits that appear in the Crown lakeen Exhibition.
The Exhibition is a celebration of Traveller/Mincéir girls, their aesthetic expression, and their unique culture. The name Crown lakeen is drawn from the Traveller language Cant, with lakeen meaning girl.
The Crown lakeen Exhibition runs at the Linenhall Arts Centre Gallery, Castlebar, Co Mayo, from Friday 2 October to Saturday 31 October. It is the 21st annual exhibition curated at the Centre with young audiences in mind.
The Crown lakeen Exhibition is presented in tandem with its sister exhibition Crown beoir, which takes place at the National Museum of Ireland Country Life, Turlough Parke, Co Mayo.
These exhibitions are part of a larger project titled Crown – Hair and Identity, which focuses on Traveller/Mincéiri women and girls and how hair is intrinsically linked to identity, ethnicity, culture and gender.
Admission to the Crown lakeen Exhibition is free and all are welcome.