In Ireland, St Brigid’s Day on 1st February optimistically celebrates the beginning of spring, no matter what the weather, with one of the traditions being the making of crosses from reeds. Currently with the cold, snow and ice, it feels anything but spring, but the spring colourful bulbs are bursting through the hard ground and the days are becoming longer.
Saint Brigid, one of Ireland’s patron saints, was a 6th century Irish Christian nun, abbess, and foundress of several monasteries of nuns, including that of Kildare in Ireland. Her saint’s day also celebrates the contribution of women to farming and to religious and family life.
At the 12-Star Gallery in Europe House in London, 89 female Irish artists have contributed work to a celebration of St Bridget’s Day, her symbolic cross and what she means to women and to Irish life, organised by the Hamilton Gallery from Sligo, Ireland, with the small works ranging from the traditional form of icons to modern and contemporary interpretations.