I am really enjoying my time here at John’s Street, I am over the half way mark now, and am working very hard, but I do wish I could sprout another set of hands as I can’t seem to work fast enough!

My cake wielding, vulture carrying lady attracted a good crowd over the weekend, it was great while working in my goldfish bowl (reference to the two large windows looking out onto John’s Street) to witness the reaction of passer byers to my work in the window, it gave me great confidence.

This weekend I had to postpone the weekly swim filming in order to catch up with my work. I will train with Waterford Triathlon swimmers on at Dunmore on Monday evening though.

There are many artists in all different mediums who choose to use water and swimming in their art work. Here are a few that I have found interesting.

The late Roger Deakin wrote the book “Waterlog” a diary of his swims in the lakes and rivers throughout Britain.

This book is an inspiration to many swimmers and artists, and he well known in the ‘wild swimming’ groups in UK. Roger Deakin took inspiration from reading John Cheever’s short story “The Swimmer”.

I haven’t read the book, but I did see the film many years ago. It was brought to my attention at a time when there was a TV advert for Levis also inspired by the book “The Swimmer”. Below is a picture of Burt Lancaster, star of the film.

“The Swimmer” is a very bizzare film, and it doesn’t come recommended!  Although I really like the idea of the swimming home through all the swimming pools, there are some dodgy scenes, for instance Burt Lancaster running along side a black stallion in his speedos!

Below are two films, a snippet from “The Swimmer” trailer and the Levis advert.

Gary Coyle is an artist who documents his daily swims at The Forty Foot in Dun Laoghaire using photos, film and stage performance.

He mentioned the artist Richard Long who records his walks as his art practice. To quote Gary Coyle – “the thought entered my head, if Richard Long’s walks are art, why aren’t my swims?”

The Irish Times, August 8th 2009 article by Gemma Tipton.

I went to the Gary Coyle’s performance at the RHA the week before I came down to Kilkenny and I really enjoyed the opinions he had on performance art, how he was using his everyday activity as part of his work and performance.

Another quote – “I’ve got this everyday activity, this thing that happens at the bottom of my road and I’ve put it through an art mincer to see what comes out of it,”

The Irish Times, August 8th 2009 article by Gemma Tipton.

Myself and two Galway artists, Jennifer Cunningham and Lisa Sweeney did “The East-West Swim” the day after Gary Coyle’s performance. First we went in at The Forty Foot and when we arrived back to Galway that evening we went swimming in at Blackrock!

Anita Murphy a Galway artist  photographed the swimmers who meet daily at Blackrock swimming spot in Salthill, Galway


The other day Niamh Finn sent me the link to the Cois Céim dance company who have just made a short dance film where the two dancers are performing under water. This film was chosen for the RTÉ Dance On The Box series.


I am in the process of working out logistics for a “Swim To Work Day”. This is something I have always wanted to do, and now in Kilkenny my dream can come true! I can walk down to Green Bridge from my accomodation and literaly swim all the way to the front door of the Arts Office, John’s Street. What an opportunity!

I do have to find someone with a kayak or a competent swimmer to accompany me for safety, I have found lots of swimmers around the area, but no one in Kilkenny town centre yet.