Workshop 1 Craft Room Belfast Book Festival


Artist Commission:

Word Bird

by Patrick Murphy

The Crescent Swift 

Did you know that The Crescent is home to one of the largest colonies of swifts on the island of Ireland? The swifts join us every Summer - it's likely that you will see and hear them during the Book Festival!  

The story of their journey to us is beautiful and thought-provoking and reflected in some of the conversations and workshops this year as well as the artwork and poetry throughout the building. 

Recently we started a conversation with artist Patrick Murphy on a project inspired by our Summer friends. You can see some of Patrick's work throughout the building, including a poem about Swifts and Word Bird Prints- pop by and take a look.

In response to the Belfast Book Festival 2022, Patrick Murphy’s Word Bird Prints explore the motif of the swift with language: the Word Bird is the silhouette of a Swift with 17 translations of the word HOME that help make up the bird’s distinctive outline. Languages include; Tatar, Punjabi, Irish, Slovenian, French, Lithuanian, Latvian, Yiddish, Chinese, Azerbaijani, Turkman, Kazakh, Japanese, Spanish, Italian, Finnish, Norwegian and English.

Patrick chose to use the word Home in response to The Crescent’s role as a meeting point for the many nationalities present in contemporary Belfast. The artwork is on display in The Crescent's reception area and prints are for sale – come take a look and take home a Swift with you today. 

About the Artist

Patrick Murphy is an artist, designer and curator whose work is exhibited internationally and held in public and private collections. He works across a wide range of media and projects from commissions for large-scale art installations and interventions to print and sculptural work. As an artist, Murphy’s conceptual approach is grounded in creating a dialogue with our surroundings and each other. Using familiar objects and themes to depict and examine our culture, he seeks to alter the original context of his subjects so they appear simultaneously both familiar and unfamiliar, to encourage and stimulate a sense of questioning and search for meaning from the viewer.

His work includes commissions for KLM, and Delta Airlines, Queens University, Senator G.Mitchell, Dr Ian Paisley, John Hume and other key public figures, and his work is held in private and public collections throughout the UK, Ireland, Kentucky USA and Valletta Malta. 

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