About Cathy Hughes

Cathy Hughes grew up in Westport, Co Mayo, in the west of Ireland. She spent her summers in nearby Old Head, Louisburg and on Inis Mór, the largest of the Aran Islands. The colours of the landscapes, the maritime environment and the imagery of Celtic mythology found in these locations have been a significant and ever present factor in her art.

Cathy has been immersed in Irish Arts and Crafts since she was a child. An early influence was her mother who specialised in Irish antiques and began the Irish craft business "Carraig Donn". While studying at University College Dublin, Cathy spent her summers working in the family craft business on Inis Mór, 'Carraig Donn'. Surrounded by the locally produced, handmade Aran knitwear and enmeshed in the thriving indigenous industry, Cathy's works hint at the tactile textures of wool and hand-spun tweed. From an early age Cathy painted an anything to hand, including the very stones of Aran itself. She regularly won school and community art competitions.

Today she counts a number of West of Ireland and international artists as mentors and inspirations. These include her late cousin Owen Walsh, his son Canadian artist Ronan Walsh, alongside Mayo's own Tony O'Malley. She is a great admirer of Dorothy Cross and Louis Le Brocquy and loves the Irish artist Mainie Jellett, and Jack B Yates.

Cathy's recent work has tended towards the abstract, utilising mixed media to communicate shades of Celtic mythology alongside more contemporary local folklore and customs.

Cathy has sold her work through Dolans Art auctions, charity auctions and private collection sales.
Her most recent works are on display in galleries and private collections. She personally presented one of her works to HRH Prince Albert of Monaco on his visit to Mayo, where the Prince and Cathy discussed their shared Kelly background.