My animal sculptures are not exact replicas but rather the suggestion of an animal. They are formed in my head, where I like things to be calm, quiet and serene. They are sculpted mostly from Irish stone.
I love to soften all the edges of this hard stone as I form it to create sculpture. Working by hand sanding the surface, the stone itself comes alive, the natural veining and fossils within are exposed and a depth of colour not previously noticeable suddenly becomes vibrant. The sculpture takes on a life of its own. It has a personality and becomes a tactile thing.
About Aileen-Anne Brannigan
Aileen Anne Brannigan is a stone carver, letter carver, and sculptor. She is a native of Kilkenny City where she is based.
Her career began in 1982 with a four-year apprenticeship as a stonecutter; this provided experience in architectural and monumental stone cutting and carving. She then studied the art of letter carving in the UK. Practical experience was gained working in quarry workshops, stone yards and marble works, and as an assistant to sculptors and letter carvers. Her creative work mostly comprises abstract animal sculpture and hand-carved lettering.
Aileen Anne’s commissioned work to date includes Celtic crosses, Per Cent for Art Commissions as well as public and private memorials. She has been involved in the creation of several high-profile monuments including a Celtic cross in McMahon Street Quebec City honouring the people of Quebec who cared for Irish famine victims, the National Famine Memorial in Glasnevin Cemetery and the Civil War Monument commissioned by the Department of Defence and unveiled in July 2023.
She teaches stone carving at an addiction treatment centre in Kildare, and with the Kilkenny Carlow ETB in Windgap. A highlight each year in September is teaching stone carving and sculpture at the Feile na gCloch festival on Inis Oírr.