The inspiration for this piece was the support that the Northern Ireland Hospice has given families and individuals over the years. On one side of Elmer a typewriter sits atop a volume of books which belong to the families whose stories the Hospice has been a part of, with each piece of paper, a story (legacy) continuing to be remembered. Initials of those whose stories have been recorded spread throughout the side. (Perhaps books/pages can be attributed to individual stories as is similar to the Hospice’s website, with given permission of course). On the other side of Elmer, a meadow/’field of dreams’ shows petals of flowers, made from the Hospice’s logo stand tall and beautiful under a blanket of stars. Some petals scatter and find their way amongst the stars, symbolic of all those who have fallen asleep and now watch over from above. The two designs are tied together by a line that I read in an Elmer story that ‘…[he] would count the stars every night but never got very far before falling asleep’, I though the idea of this image was beautiful, comforting and infinite to reflect the work of the Hospice. The back of the sculpture provides a ‘social media’ moment, that people can share to remember loved ones or simply raise awareness of the Hospice & Elmer’s Trail.
Amira McDonagh is a visual artist based in County Down. She graduated from Cardiff Metropolitan University in 2011, with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art, specialising in Painting and has been working in the arts sector, as well as exhibiting and facilitating arts workshops since.
In May 2021, she launched her first online Art Prints store ‘Amira Paints’ and most recently, has exhibited one of her oil paintings entitled ‘Nightingale 2020’, as part of the Royal Ulster Academy of Arts 140th annual exhibition at The Ulster Museum Belfast.