Meandering through ‘Memory Lane’

Posted By:
Southern Regional College

8th Mar 2023

Mairead Duffy takes on Armagh Marketplace this month and brings us on a walk down ‘Memory Lane’, revisiting countryside scenes with over 45 paintings to view.  This aptly named art exhibition plays homage to Mairead’s childhood walks with Granny.  Granny ‘knows best’ has never been truer, as Granny knew a good walk could cure many ailments.  A ‘good’ walk was important even before walking become fashionable.

Born out of the first Covid lockdown, the art exhibition arose from one painting created during Mairead’s daily walk.  This daily walk was inspiring and has formed the concept for the remainder of the exhibition.  Mairead’s exhibition comprises of a mixture of acrylic and watercolour paintings.  Mairead describes her style as impressionist as you need to stand back to take it all in, much like you do when observing the countryside.

During the day, you will find Mairead lecturing in Southern Regional College.  Mairead currently lectures and coordinates the Creative Arts and Digital Technologies Level 2 Diploma.  The course gives participants a broad introduction to Art & Design, Media, Music and Performing Arts subjects.

Mairead’s own children are currently at university or undertaking the last year of A-levels at SRC.  All are of similar ages to the students’ she teaches.  The students have become Mairead’s extended family as she guides students through study and is keen for them to see success and the opportunities available within the art scene.

Mairead’s own educational background is significant.  Mairead graduated with a Degree in Textile Design, before undergoing teacher training and teaching in London and Kuwait in the Middle East.  Bringing a wealth of experience back to Northern Ireland, Mairead has celebrated eighteen years teaching with the College and has undertaken a Counselling Study course and more recently a Masters in Learning and Teaching, making her apt for guiding students.

When not in College, you will likely find Mairead in Ardress House, the National Trust property, where she is a volunteer.  There, Mairead facilitates workshops as ‘It’s good to give back’.  For Mairead, ‘Art is a pure pleasure’ which she hopes to support more people to enjoy.

Despite being busy revisiting memories of walks with Granny, Mairead is looking towards the future.  Aims for future include holding an exhibition every year and visiting bigger cities to bring the countryside to the suburbs.  Mairead is extremely proud to be from Northern Ireland as there are a lot of creative people in Northern Ireland.  Northern Irish people have a custom of not letting people behave as they are more important than what they really are; the syndrome of being ‘too big for your boots’, but Mairead is keen for people to believe in themselves.  “You have to have a bit of faith in yourself, there is hard work involved, but you can do anything.”

Speaking on her exhibition, Mairead further commented:

“Memory Lane’ is an opportunity for everyone to appreciate the beauty of our local countryside. I hope by visiting the exhibition, people will be inspired to give Art a go.  Many people have found it a brilliant escape and way of expressing themselves,  during Covid lockdowns, canvas’ were like gold dust and you couldn’t get your hands on one.  I want people to continue expressing themselves visually; to get out there, talk with others – and more importantly bring your camera or canvas along.”


The exhibition at Armagh Marketplace is free to view.  With so many paintings adorning the walls, take some time out, recharge the batteries and take yourself for a walk down ‘Memory Lane’ this March.

The exhibition is open for viewing at Armagh Marketplace until Monday 4 April 2023.

Pictured: Mairead Duffy working at one of her exhibition pieces.