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Leading Artists Unite For Charity Rug Exhibition

Colm Kenny and Martina Navrátilová of Ceadogán rugmakers with a handmade rug designed by artist Sean Scully. Image Dylan Vaughan

On January 26th, Ceadogán - Ireland's premier handmade artisan rugmakers - will launch "Island", an exciting new project uniting 12 of the country’s finest artists. Drawing on their individual designs and interpretations, each artist has created a unique one-off rug or wall hanging piece. The finished collection will go on display to the public at the Hang Tough Contemporary gallery on Exchequer Street, Dublin. Following the exhibition, the artworks will be auctioned off, with 50% of the profits from the sale going toward Peter McVerry Trust, in aid of the homeless, and the remainder to fund a regenerative project at the site of Ceadogán studios on Bannow Bay, Co. Wexford.

The Island project will include pieces by Gottfried Helnwein, Dorothy Cross, Sean Scully, Maser, Domino Whisker, Gilbert Menassa, Hannah Ní Mhaonaigh, Mary O’Connor, Colm Mac Athlaoich, Sean Atmos, Lola Donoghue and Alice Fitzgerald. The project is the brainchild of Colm Kenny and Martina Navrátilová, the couple who are the creative directors at Ceadogán.

“Island is an incredibly exciting opportunity to witness some of the most celebrated Irish artists come together and showcase their immense creativity through a medium rarely seen” says Navrátilová, “Ceadogán Rugmakers are proud to offer this unique artistic experience, having always embraced collaboration with those leading in Ireland's art world. This is your chance to see these extraordinary creators push past boundaries, and for collectors, an opportunity to own a one-of-a-kind piece of Irish art whilst also supporting two very worthy causes”.

The finished collection will be auctioned off by Whytes Auctioneers on February 5th. The pieces are expected to fetch between €1,500-€16,000 each and profits from the sale will be split between the Peter McVerry Trust in aid of homelessness and a regenerative project called “For the Birds” spearheaded by Ceadogán themselves.

We are passionate about creating a sustainable production process for our rugs and using farmland to achieve this goal” explains Colm Kenny. Towards that end, we have made prototypes with various materials like alpaca wool from Loop Head Alpacas in West Clare as well as hemp and wool. Encouraged by these results, the For the Birds project aims to take things further: introducing regenerative techniques on-site while also exploring ways of setting up a small scale mill so that yarns can be spun right there at home. It's an exciting project which will help us create unique pieces While supporting and creating wildlife habitat and biodiversity.

Ceadogán Rugmakers is one of Ireland’s most successful small artisan companies whose striking hand tufted rugs decorate the walls and floors of embassies, hotels and private houses all over the world. For over 3 decades the family led business has operated from their studios in Wexford where they are committed to crafting beautiful yet purposeful rugs and wall hangings that transcend traditional craftsmanship for a more contemporary aesthetic.

Island will go on display at Hang Tough Contemporary, Exchequer St, Dublin 2, from Thursday 26th January - Sunday 5th February. Entry is free. On February 5th, the collection will be auctioned by Whytes Auctioneers. To enter a bid in advance or to view the online catalogue visit

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