President Michael D. Higgins has paid tribute to the genius and creativity of Irish women during a celebratory event at the Irish Embassy in London to mark St. Brigid’s Day 2018.
The busy event featured numerous talks, screenings and performances, from some of Ireland’s finest first and second-generation women.
Comedian Pauline McLynn compered proceedings, as two hundred guests, over five hours, celebrated women from music, film, comedy, architecture, poetry, literature, fashion, art, theatre, craft, business and entrepreneurship, science and technology.
In his official address to end the day’s celebrations, the President reflected on the impact of Great Irish women through the years.
“In a way I think what’s important is this – it is St Brigid’s Day, Lá Fhéile Bríde, and we invoke as it were the long women’s history and the influence of women from the past.
“We celebrate the sheer genius of women in all the different areas of life – science, art, politics and so on.
“And then we look to the future and we’re left with all of the challenges. We mustn’t delay the contribution of women in this fullest sense from any aspect or sphere of Irish life.”
Ambassador Adrian O’Neill first initiated this inaugural St Brigid’s Day celebration on his arrival to London, with the aspiration for it to become an annual event to take place at Irish embassies and consulates across the globe.
His particular focus on creativity united the large number of Irish organisations at home and in the UK, which frequently showcase Irish cultural content, to contribute speakers, installations and to promote the event to their networks.
A wall of recognition included thanks to the Irish Cultural Centre Hammersmith, the Irish Literary Society, Irish Film London, Camden Irish Centre, the Women’s Irish Network, IIBN, Poetry Ireland, the Design & Craft Council, the Barbara Stanley Gallery, Enterprise Ireland, Tourism Ireland, Bord Bia, Orla Kiely, Culture Ireland, Comhaltas, the Abbey Theatre, Oliver Sears Gallery and the Science Foundation of Ireland.
“The word that runs right through today is the word in Irish, cruthaitheacht – creativity”, said the President.
“It’s a celebration of all of the creativity of both the contemporary Irish women in Ireland, and those with connections to Ireland who are making a contribution here in the United Kingdom.
Participants in the day’s events ranged from architects and industrial entrepreneurs to contemporary musicians and TV presenters. Check out the gallery below for a flavour of the day.+19
You may also be interested in: