I have known Danny all of my life. His parents used to live across the road from my Grandparents in Bantry, West Cork, Ireland and when we were young, we all used to play together. I met him for a coffee in Organico Cafe in Bantry during the week and we had a chat about his art and painting career. He is a quiet, unassuming man but when we start to talk about art, he comes alive!
Danny was one of a family of thirteen children and art was a way of gaining some solitude amid the bustle of the busy house. Danny has drawn and painted for as long as he can remember and it has always been a form of escapism for him. While there is not a history of artists in the family, he fondly remembers his Mother always filling the house and garden with bright, vivid, colours. He constantly drew, sketched, doodled and painted many everyday items and over time has developed his own unique style. Not everyone understood his passion for art but he pushed on with it and now he is very glad that he did. The most fascinating fact about Danny’s artwork is that he is entirely self-taught. He has no formal training in art. He learnt everything that he knows through experimenting and continually developing his own techniques. He uses various mixed-media including acrylic, oil, ink, spray cans, pencils and pens. Danny tells me that everyone can paint if they try!
For Danny, art is his hobby. He is a people watcher and gets ideas and inspiration from everyday life. He has a photographic memory and he often paints images of everyday scenes that he sees while walking around his hometown Bantry. Danny is a local postman and he enjoys the interaction that this gives him with the community. It also allows him to step away from his artwork and give him plenty of opportunities for observing everyday life. He loves boats, the sea, people, and farmers markets, so Bantry is ideally placed to give him plenty of inspiration for painting. Danny specialises in painting boats, landscapes, still life, cows, animals, and people. He regularly travels the by-roads of Ireland on his beloved motorbike and sketches as he goes, capturing various scenes along the route.
The passion for his art is obvious and he is certainly driven by a love of art and a hunger to succeed. He was surprised and humbled by the resounding positivity and encouragement that he received when he held his first exhibition in Kilcrohane Post Office in West Cork in 2000. In fact he goes on to tell me that many people never even knew that he painted! His success has snowballed since then, mainly through word of mouth. He regularly has exhibitions throughout Ireland and his work is collected both in Ireland and internationally. He is often commissioned for particular works which he seems to produce effortlessly.
His next exhibition is called Memories Of Bantry. It showcases Danny’s art from the Wild Atlantic Way. It is a specially created event for Bantry and Danny has selected ten of his paintings for a unique outdoor exhibition on Wolfe Tone Square. The launch is next Friday the first of June at one pm in the Tourist Office in Bantry and everyone is welcome. A limited edition of fine art prints from the exhibition are available to buy for €35 each from Bantry Tourist Office, Forest and Flock, and online on Danny’s website www.dannyvincentsmith.com
I have a life-long passion for Bantry and its unique culture. Each painting represents special memories for me both in the past and the present. My exhibition attempts to show-case this fantastic town. I hope you get as much enjoyment looking at the pictures as I did in creating them.
The Memories Of Bantry outdoor exhibition will run in Wolfe Tone Square, Bantry for June, July and August. If you are in Bantry over the Summer, it will be well worth a visit. Danny’s prints capture the atmosphere of West Cork, making them the perfect gift. As part of the launch of this exhibition, Danny is offering you a chance to win one of his gorgeous fine art prints. To enter, just follow the instructions on the following website www.dannyvincentsmith.com
See you soon,