ART Jack and Jill hope pigs will fly


Pigs on parade

Jack and Jill hope pigs will fly

Ciara Moynihan

A fun and worthwhile ‘Pigs on Parade’ public art display was launched in Dublin last Monday, February 2, with 100 pieces of life-size pig art adorning the streets of the capital for February and March. The porcine project is all in aid of the Jack and Jill Children’s Foundation, which is hoping that funds raised will cushion the blow of a recent cut to its Lotto funding.
Three of the eye-catching pigs have been created by Mayo-based artists, Michelle Courtney, Roswitha Groepler and Daire Lynch.
Michelle Courtney, who hails from Newport, graduated with distinction from Westport College of Further Education in both 2012 and 2014. The design concept for her pig ‘The Bard of Burrishoole’ was to create a pig would bring viewers into the realms of their childhood. As a printmaker, Courtney embellished her pig with individual lino-cut prints of nursery-rhyme characters and quotes.
Roswitha Groepler from Killala regularly donates original pieces to charities, inspired by colour, shapes and what the charity actually does. Her pieces are meant to invoke feelings of fun and hope while remaining casual and ungarish. Her pig ‘Varken’ was inspired by three concepts: ‘Childhood memories’, ‘fun’ and ‘Dutch’.
Daire Lynch, originally from Dublin but now living in Cong, has exhibited in London, Scotland, New York and Ohio. Lynch is a self-taught painter whose visual artistic output comprises of nudes/figurative works and portraiture, in many mediums, though he prefers oils for figurative works and watercolour for portraiture. Inspiration for his pig, ‘The Inner Working of Swine’, was drawn from his love of the absurd and his love of cats.
Each of the hand-crafted pigs are designed to become highly collectable and valuable works of art. They can be sponsored or purchased from The charity is also inviting people to find a number of the pigs, which are individually coded, and to enter a fun competition. Prizes include a weekend break to Inchydoney Island Lodge and Spa Clonakilty, Cork, for a family of four, as well as other hotel breaks and hampers.
All the pigs will then be sold off for Jack and Jill through an online auction that is open to all and already underway, culminating in a live auction of the top 21 pigs at a gala dinner in the Double Tree Hilton on March 21.
Jack and Jill have provided home nursing care and respite for 72 local families with sick children in Mayo since 1997, and has helped over 1,800 children across the country. Less than 20 percent of the Jack and Jill Foundation’s funding coming from the State. “With this recent, blunt cut in our Lotto funding from €75,000 to €30,000, we rely more than ever on creative fundraisers like this,” explains CEO and founder Jonathan Irwin.  “A wonderful campaign like this means a lot to our families … Pigs on Parade allows us to raise awareness and funds for Jack and Jill and have some great fun and appreciate some wonderful artwork.”

For more information, visit, or find the Pigs on Parade page on Facebook.