Curry O'Shea 1958 - 2012, RIP
Born in 1958 in Cork, Ireland, Curry O'Shea (Cornelius) has been a resident of St Mungo's Projects for many years. Forever a popular man, he was much loved for his unique and charming character. His passion for art and music were also reflected in his extraordinary personality.
He was an active contributor to Homeless Diamonds, an arts magazine published by people living or working in St Mungo’s hostels.
A tribute from Homeless Diamonds
Curry O’Shea’s painting of a woman (The Virgin Mary) was on the cover of Homeless Diamonds issue 8 in early 2009 and he continued to make important contributions to the magazine from that time. His works were ambitious large scale, finely detailed paintings and drawings, often taken from well-known masters, but also included a series of fairies from the popular children’s books.
Curry wrote thoughtfully about the nature of art and what it meant to him (HD issue 10, 2009). Later he published the lyrics to his song Ethiopian Blues – he was an accomplished singer-songwriter, playing his own guitar accompaniment with the same accomplished verve he brought to his paintings. He recorded music and two of his songs are in the Homeless Diamonds disk published last December.
While Curry’s art practice - painting, drawing, singing or playing music - was always on a grand scale, he was a modest, quiet person who communicated softly with few words – a gentle presence which we will miss very much.
A reflection from Cafe Art
Curry O'Shea epitomises the ethos behind Cafe Art.
And that is to have a belief in people like Curry, recognise their talent, and to share and celebrate it with as many people as possible. Cafe Art did just that when we took Curry to celebrate his iconic 'Sunflower' painting at a Cafe where it was exhibited. It was one of his happier days for him to know that there were people, some total strangers to him, who shared his journey in life too.
Tragically, Curry passed away suddenly in a little over 2 weeks after that day. At least, he knew his talents were being recognised, appreciated, enjoyed and celebrated. That's what counts for Cafe Art and all its 'silent' artists.
The entire essence of this initiative is captured in just that one big smile from Curry in the above photo taken that day.
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