"An Ulster Elegy"
Oil on canvas
TP Flanagan was very moved by a local tragedy that took place on Upper Lough Erne during a severe winter in December 1961. The island postman, William Rooney, lost his life in perishing conditions when returning home from delivering the mail. His brother, James, died when trying to rescue him. Ten years later, TP Flanagan commemorated the tragic event in a painting that evolved to symbolize the wider grief and loss being experienced as part of 'the troubles'. 'An Ulster Elegy' is painted in the form of a biblical diptych in two parts. TP Flanagan stated: "On the left side of the diptych curved forms interact with a linear device creating an abstract pattern which I hoped would evoke the solemnity of traditional Celtic burial and its attendant melancholy music. The right hand canvas is more direct - a black boat floats on a open stretch of water under a dark sky. There is a suggestion of a funeral wreath or alternately of a flurry of snow."
Purchase supported by The National Lottery Heritage Fund, the Art Fund and the Friends of Fermanagh County Museum
The Artist's Estate