Please join us for our Monthly Business Networking Breakfast.
Tuesday, November 17, 2015
8am - 9:30am
Enjoy a traditional Irish Breakfast and engaging speakers. Meet and greet with local New York business people. The event is co-hosted by 1st Vice President William Lee and Past President Niall O'Leary.
Guest Speaker: Rowan Gillespie, Irish Bronze Casting Sculptor
Most recently, he made the Archbishop John Hughes Memorial, which is being dedicated this Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 2:30 pm at Old St Patrick's.
$25 for IBO 2015 Members who RSVP by 3PM Monday, November 16, 2015.
$30 for non-members.
687 Lexington Avenue (between 56th & 57th st)
New York, NY 10022
Guest Speaker Bio:
Rowan Gillespie was born in Dublin in 1953 but moved to Cyprus a few months later with his Irish Quaker parents, Jack and Moira, elder brother John and sister Lorraine. His early childhood was illuminated by the scorching Cypriot sun where he was regaled with stories from Greek mythology. Cyprus, the “island of copper’, is the home of bronze and it was here that Rowan was first introduced to the ‘lost wax’ process of bronze casting, of which he has since become master.
After civil war broke out in Cyprus in 1963-64, the Gillespie’s moved to York in North of England, where Rowan attended Bootham School and in 1968, York School of Art. It was in York that he met Hanne Thome, his Norwegian wife-to-be and soulmate. In 1970 Rowan applied to Kingston College of Art in London where under the tutelage of woodcarver John Robson, he met and was inspired by Henry Moore and his search for the ‘inner nature’ of the medium. He completed the second year of his sculpture degree course the Statens Kunst og Handwerk Skole in Oslo, returning to Kingston for his final year. While lecturing for three years at the Munch Museum in Oslo, he fell under the spell of the nineteenth-century Norwegian symbolist/expressionist painter Edvard Munch.
Rowan and Hanne, along with their son Alexander and daughter Teresa, made the decision to settle at Clonlea, an oasis of calm in Blackrock, south of Dublin. Rowan was at last able to build his studio, workshop, and foundry in an old outbuilding on the edge of the property and Hanne established what has become an internationally renowned yoga studio. Together, they have created an environment of tranquility and care where art, yoga, and complementary practices can flourish.
Rowan Gillespie is almost unique among the bronze-casting fraternity in that he works completely alone from inception to unveiling. The consummate craftsman, he has built a carefully conceived one-man workshop and foundry – developed through a thorough and often painfully learned understanding of the laws of physics and chemistry.
Early commissions from the Bank of Ireland led to major international projects but perhaps his best-known work is the award-winning FAMINE sculpture. Seven desperate, emaciated figures, shadowed by a ravenous, opportunist dog shuffle silently along the quayside near the Custom House alongside the River Liffey in Dublin. Ireland is in the grip of the Great Famine of the 1840’s, the most tragic chapter in its history. Visitors to Rowan Gillespie’s FAMINE sculpture are often moved to tears. MIGRANTS carries the story to the Toronto waterfront, while two further famine-related pieces are planned for New York and London. These figures portray not only the victims of the Great Potato Famine but also the unacceptable global starvation that haunts us all still. The sculptures are not just historical monuments but a reminder and a wake-up call to all affluent societies.
Gillespie's public works can be found in Ireland, Europe, the USA and Canada
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