Eyes on Gaza exhibition to help people in dire situation

Arts Week with Judy Murphy

“I believe in equal rights and human rights, without violence,” says Phil McKenna, who with her friend Anne Quinn is co-ordinating Eyes on Gaza, an exhibition of art and culture taking place from this Friday to Sunday in Oranmore’s Limelight Creative Arts Centre.

The centre, which is located above the Lidl supermarket in the village will contain 140 pieces from more than 40 artists, many of whom are members of KAVA (the Kinvara Area Visual Arts organisation).

Works on display will include paintings, photos, prints, glasswork and sculptures, with everything being for sale.

On sale too will be cookbooks and books on Palestinian history and literature, for adults and children.

Phil lives in Maree, in a peaceful rural location, a world away from the devastation that’s being inflicted on the people of Gaza. But it dominates her every waking moment.

Working as a doctor in the refugee camps of Lebanon in the early 1980s, she met Palestinians who had been driven from their homes in the mid-20th century, having been betrayed on multiple levels before, during and after the establishment of the state of Israel.

Their suffering was not unlike that endured historically by the Irish who had been driven off their land, she observes. And as someone reared by a mother with a keen sense of compassion and fair play, Phil knew they were being wronged.

That knowledge deepened in 1981 when Israel bombarded Lebanon during her second period there.

Phil and her husband, Hasan, a Palestinian whom she met in Lebanon, went on to work all over the world before they eventually settled back in Ireland. They have two grown-up children – their daughter Róisín El Cherif is a talented folk singer while their son Sami is a lawyer in New York, specialising in immigration and criminal defence cases.

Pictured: Róisín El Cherif, whose mother Phil (inset) is one of the organisers of the weekend-long exhibition will be one of the singers taking part in this Sunday’s a Seisúin for Gaza at the Limelight Creative Arts Centre in Oranmore. The exhibition runs from this Friday to Sunday inclusive.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app

The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

More like this:

Sign Up To get Weekly Sports UPDATES

Go Up