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The Courtyard Gallery: Crown beoir

Admission free

Crown beoir is a portrait exhibition originated by artist Breda Mayock and photographed by Orla Sloyan, currently on display in the Courtyard Gallery at the National Museum of Ireland - Country Life. 

A short film by the award-winning film maker Mia Mullarkey, also called Crown beoir, was launched on 20 October 2020.   

This exhibition is part of a fascinating Mayo arts project entitled Crown - Hair and Identity which focuses on Traveller/Mincéiri women and girls and the subject of how hair is intrinsically linked to identity, ethnicity, culture and gender. 
The exhibition and film name draws from the Traveller language Gammon/Cant, with beoir meaning woman. The portraits in this exhibition quietly explore and celebrate the unique aesthetic expression of Traveller women from Mayo Traveller Support Group. 

The short film features Traveller/Micéirí women whose portraits are shown in the exhibition. In the film they discuss their connection to their hair, its appearance and care as well as important memories, traditions and associations with their hair as an expression of their unique Traveller identity. 

Irish Travellers or Mincéirí are an indigenous ethnic minority group who have been part of Irish society for centuries. Travellers share traditions, cultural values, language and customs that make them a distinct ethnic group. Many Traveller women have a unique aesthetic expression. 
Crown - Hair and Identity is originated by artist Breda Mayock who worked with Traveller women and girls in the Maple Youth Centre, Ballinrobe, and Mayo Traveller Support Group. She worked with photographer Orla Sloyan to photograph the women with a special emphasis placed on their hair.

Breda was supported in this project by Creative Ireland Mayo, Mayo County Council Arts Service and the Healthy Ireland Fund. 

Crown beoir is presented in tandem with its sister exhibition Crown lakeen, which focuses on the girls who participated in the project and takes place at the Linenhall Arts Centre, Castlebar. 

This unique photography exhibition opened on 5 October 2020 at the Courtyard Gallery (next to the Museum café) and continues into early 2021. 


The Courtyard Gallery: Crown beoir is located at:
Turlough Park,
Co. Mayo
F23 HY31

A Courtyard Gallery exhibition at the National Museum of Ireland - Country Life

Country Life

Traveller Culture, Crafts and Traditions

Explore a selection of material related to the culture, traditions and crafts of the Traveller community in Ireland.

Learn more
Traveller Culture, Crafts and Traditions

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Country Life

Turlough Park,
Co. Mayo,
F23 HY31

+353 94 903 1755