Candles for Janet Mullarney RHA | 9th April 2020
Janet Mullarney RHA | 1952 – 2020
Dear Fellow RHA Members & Friends,
You have already heard of the sad news of Janet Mullarney’s passing and although we were all expecting it, it is nevertheless a shock. Janet had been living and working with this terrible illness for so long, that we had almost come to believe she would keep going for another while yet. I’m glad that her old friends Mary and Claudio were with her in her home in Tuscany these last weeks, and glad to know that she passed peacefully in the end.
Janet was an original – stylish, vibrant, eccentric, full of life, and generally a breath of fresh air, and a true artist. She went to Italy at a very young age, and never really had a formal art education. Maybe because of that, her work has always had an extraordinary freshness and originality. She always seemed to me completely fearless, and that fearlessness carried into her sculpture, her drawings and her approach to materials and ideas. I had the pleasure of hanging her series of heads in the recent RHA Collection show, and was struck afresh by the lovely spontaneity of the carving of the wood and the playful markings on the heads that translated into visual poetry.
She had a deep love of Italy that permeated her life and her work. But she loved Ireland too, and spent so much time here that she was completely a part of our lives and the Irish art scene. We will miss her great style, her wonderful scarves and earrings and outfits, but above all her enormous warmth and delightful company.
May she rest in peace, she will be sorely missed.
Eithne Jordan RHA, Keeper
It is with great sadness that we, the RHA, announce that our much loved colleague Janet Mullarney passed away this morning in her home in Italy. Her close friend Mary Ryder was with her and commented:
“She was very calm and at peace with herself and those around her. She had a very tough time over the last few months and despite all her usual stubborn, single-minded, driving force (her words), she became too ill to carry on.”
We hope to facilitate a memorial service for Janet at the RHA in the autumn.
Rest in Peace.