Outgoing Council Chair commissions piece for Civic Art collection

11th December 2020

Chair and Aidan McAleer with Art Piece (2)

The outgoing Chairman of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Councillor Chris Smyth has commissioned a piece of artwork which captures images of the district during lockdown for the Civic Art collection.

The collection, which largely comprises works by local artists, was started by the first  Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Councillor Thomas O’Reilly and has been added to by each Council Chair in succeeding years.

Speaking about the commission, Councillor Smyth said;

“During lock down, the quality of photographs submitted by members of the public as a response to our Facebook call for the Tourism Ambassador initiative was truly remarkable. I felt it would be a good idea to ask a local photographer, Aidan McAleer to compile a montage of these photographs with a few of his own excellent shots to create this visual reminder of 2020.

I believe the message this piece conveys is that even in the midst of the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, there is beauty to be found, especially here in our district.

I am delighted that my last duty as Chair of the Council was to accept this specially commissioned work on behalf of the people of the Fermanagh and Omagh District Council area, and it is my fervent wish that that one day very soon, it can be viewed as it is meant to be, in a public space, easily accessible to the public.

Support for the arts is very important, particularly at this time when the sector is facing significant challenges as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. We are blessed in our district to have such great artists working across a range of media and I am delighted to be supporting local at this time by commissioning this piece for the Council’s Civic Art Collection from local photographer Aidan McAleer.”

Aidan is a local photographer who lives in Omagh and works in retail. He has recently enjoyed tremendous international success with his screenplay, Forgiven, winning awards at the Kosice International Monthly Film Festival, Prague International Monthly Film Festival and the Canadian Cinematography Awards. Aidan is a graduate of the Creative Media and Creative Arts programmes at South West College.