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Animals as Messengers, Guides & Fairies: Online Visual Art Workshops 14 - 21 Aug 2020

Connect with the animal world in this online mini-sculpture workshop for children aged 5-12 with illustrator Duffy Mooney-Sheppard.

In Irish folklore, animals have always been seen as living between worlds, carrying meaning and messages. Is there an animal that you have been noticing a lot recently? In the garden, the park, at your window or maybe, in your dreams?

In this workshop we will discover some of the stories and wisdom associated with our native birds, bees, foxes, hares and deer. We will follow in the footsteps of many artists and storytellers before us and create a miniature sculpture of the animal which carries a unique and special meaning to you.

The cost of this workshop includes a small art pack, which will be sent to you in the post (Republic of Ireland only). This pack will include a few small materials to help you to create your animal sculpture.

You will need:

  • The art pack that you receive in the post inside its envelope (unopened!). Inside you’ll find a letter explaining details.
  • Pencils
  • Other drawing materials (optional) e.g. markers, crayons, whatever you have at home!

Booking closes at midnight on Thursday 6 Aug for 14 Aug workshops and Thursday 13 Aug for 21 August workshops to allow adequate time for your pack to be posted to you. Early booking is advised.

Requirements for Participation

For safety reasons, a parent or grown-up should be present in the room throughout the session, and if necessary be available to assist their child, so you're very welcome to take part in the workshop alongside your child.

  • Computer/Tablet/Phone with internet access for Zoom – placed on a table at children’s eye level
  • A table to sit at
  • Pencils and paper- these can be scraps of paper, card old packaging and any materials you have to hand such as pencils, crayons, makers, paints

Online platform: The workshop will be delivered using the Zoom video call software.This will be a private Zoom session which will only be accessed by those booked into the workshop, the artist and The Ark's staff. The session will be recorded for the safety and security of all participants, however this recording will not be shared publicly and will be deleted within 30 days.

Duffy Mooney Sheppard

About Duffy Mooney-Sheppard:

Duffy is a visual artist, arts program curator and workshop facilitator. A recent graduate of the MA Children’s Book Illustration at Cambridge School of Arts, she is drawn to the process of story-making as a way to explore ideas and share her curiosity about the natural world. With many years of experience working creatively with young people at The Ark and many other cultural institutions and schools, she has developed her facilitation methods which are based in playful observation, imagination and telling tall tales. This year, in response to the COVID-19 crisis, she founded Little Islands Art Club, an online art groups for children and adults. Find out more at:

Beautiful Beasts 660

Part of The Beautiful Beasts @ Home

This summer, enjoy a range of delightful online events and experiences in visual art, drama and dance, inspired by The Ark's collection of loveable animal sculptures, The Beautiful Beasts. Find out more about The Beautiful Beasts @ Home.

The Beautiful Beasts @ Home is part of The Ark's 25th birthday season, sponsored by BDO.