My Cultural Life: Tapestry weaver Lorna Donlon

Lorna Donlon from Dublin is a tapestry weaver and earned a first class degree in Cell and Molecular Biology in 2020. She is currently exhibiting at Solstice Arts, Navan; Royalty, Boyle; and from May 20th at the Market House Gallery, Cappoquin, Co. Waterford.

BOOK: The Liar’s Dictionary

Growing up in a house lined with books, I always thought of myself as a reader. I’m not. That doesn’t stop me from buying or borrowing books from the James Joyce Library in UCD – or better yet, taking books from the leave-and-take-away shelves outside the library and precariously storing them all in my studio To stack in towers or next to my bed.

I’m an avid reader. There are currently two such untidy towers balancing on the top The Liar’s Dictionary by Eley Williams and stop reading the news by Rolf Dobelli.

SCREEN: Laurie Anderson

I haven’t watched TV in years and I seem to have forgotten how to do it. Sometimes I try to watch a series or a movie on Netflix, but I find a whole evening goes by while I’m trying to find something to watch, with absolutely no luck.

I’ve spent hours watching people talk to each other on YouTube, which is particularly captivating, and Laurie Anderson’s 2021 Norton Lectures were amazing. I’ve just given up “The Covid” and am already looking forward to one of my favorite pastimes – going to the cinema.

MUSIC: William Byrd

I spent the first three months of this year working more or less continuously day and night to complete a large woven tapestry. One of the wonderful things about tapestry weaving is that it is a quiet, ear-free activity.

Not only did I listen to my music (eclectic – from William Byrd to Yellow Bird) very loudly, but I also bought audio books of some of the classic novels called Everyone Reads But I Have Not. Now I know exactly what people mean when they say something is Orwellian, and I’m just finding out who my namesake “Lorna” Doone was.

ART: Tapestry Apocalypse

I don’t have the travel bug, but I am determined to see The Apocalypse Tapestry
Aggravation. It is an epic work woven in Paris in the late 13th century and comprises six tapestries. My Cultural Life: Tapestry weaver Lorna Donlon

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