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Step Inside the World of the WolfWalkers

A major free exhibition has opened to the public in Kilkenny’s Butler Gallery. The exhibition is in conjunction with the worldwide release of WolfWalkers, the latest feature film by Irish animation studio Cartoon Saloon. The immersive installation includes original drawings, background paintings and a behind the scenes video. The exhibition was officially opened on Saturday and attended by Eva Whittaker (12) from Prosperous, Co. Kildare, who voices the film’s leading character Mebh Óg MacTíre.

The exhibition is the third collaboration between Butler Gallery and the Kilkenny-based, four-time Oscar© nominated animation studio. Commenting on their latest collaboration Butler Gallery Director Anna O’Sullivan remarked:

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to collaborate again with Cartoon Saloon. The film’s directors Tomm (Moore) and Ross (Stewart) are not only continuing in the tradition of Ireland’s greatest storytellers but have introduced the city of Kilkenny as a place of magic and wonder in minds of both children and adults worldwide. Our exhibition at Butler Gallery gives visitors a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in the world of animation and take a peek behind the scenes to experience the thought process behind this work of art.”

WolfWalkers is set in Kilkenny in 1650, in a time of superstition and magic when wolves are seen as demonic and nature an evil to be tamed. A young apprentice hunter, Robyn, comes to Ireland with her father who has been sent there to wipe out the last wolfpack. When Robyn saves a wild native girl called Mebh, their friendship leads her to discover the world of the WolfWalkers, the very thing her father is tasked to destroy. At the opening Eva Whittaker, who voices the character of Mebh remarked: “it's great to see all the artwork that went into the making of the movie, and anyone who is a fan of the movie will love it!”

To coincide with the exhibition, Butler Gallery will be hosting a number of talks and events which will be streamed online from January-March. Fans will have an opportunity to meet the film’s directors Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart as they discuss how scripts are developed from “initial ideas into fantastical visuals”.

WolfWalkers is available to watch on Apple Tv+. The Exhibition, which is open to the public until March, was curated by Butler Gallery, designed by Steven McNamara of Roji and is free to attend.

WolfWalkers: The Exhibition would not have been possible without the generous support of The Arts Council, Creative Ireland, Kilkenny County Council, The Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, RTE Supporting the Arts, Gorilla Post Production, AIB, Bespoke & Co., Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, Animation Skillnet, Screen Skills Ireland, Saffrey Champness Ireland, Apple TV and ROJI.

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