Patience and talent bring rewards for artist Tom

Tom McLean with his painting, The Art of Love and Work, for which he won the Screaming Pope Prize.
Tom McLean with his painting, The Art of Love and Work, for which he won the Screaming Pope Prize.

Galway-based artist and graduate of GMIT’s Centre for the Creative Arts and Media, Tom McLean has won the Screaming Pope Prize V1 at the K-FEST arts event in Killorglin, County Kerry. Tom was awarded the SPP VI for his painting, The Art of Love and Work. He receives a cash prize of €1,000.

Twenty-five-year-old Tom is a contemporary figurative painter and illustrator, whose work is sometimes autobiographical, drawing from both his own experiences and those who sit for him. Each model plays a role in a story embedded with emotion and meaning – touching on universal themes of interpersonal relationships, identity, anxiety, isolation and addiction.

Tom graduated from CCAM in 2016 and spent a further year at the RHA School in Dublin. He’s now a studio artist and board director of the 126 Artist Run Gallery in Galway City. He has been short-listed and won various awards before this one, including the 2016 Hennessey Portrait prize (2016) and 188th Whyte’s Award at RHA.

He was also was the winner of a public vote and named One to Watch Under 40 by The Irish Arts Review, featuring in its summer 2018 edition.

“Tom has been a Screaming Pope Prize Finalist three times since 2014, so our whole festival team, as well as Tom’s patrons and fellow artists, are delighted his work was chosen,” said Penny Dahl, Chairperson of K-FEST.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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