Cork artist Brendan McInnes has been inspired by the painting of the cow painting by the late Italian painter Giorgio de Chirico, which is known to the Irish people as a symbol of the Irish state.
The painting is often depicted with the Irish flag on the back.
“It’s a very popular painting in Cork.
It’s very traditional and Irish,” he said.
“I really wanted to bring the Irish to the painting and give it a touch of Irishness.”
Mr McInnis started with a canvas.
He painted the cow’s head, eyes and ears, and added the words “cow painting” in Irish, the only language the painting is known in.
Mr Mcinnes said the words are used to represent the idea of the cows being the source of all our food and the cows as our “mainspring”.
The cow painting is used in many other places, he said, but it was the cow which he was drawn to.
“This is the most common symbol in Irish people’s eyes,” he explained.
“If I can paint it on a canvas, I think it’s going to be a little bit of a touchstone for people.”
There’s a lot of people who would be able to relate to it.
“People say they like the way it looks, but if I go and paint it, I want people to recognise it as an Irish icon.”
I want people from other countries to have a good laugh at my expense.”‘
My Irish’ story, a portrait of a child, was painted on a painting of a cow that Mr McIlwain had bought at a local art supply shop.
It was sold in Dublin at auction in October, but Mr McIlnys said it was “one of those things you’re always going to have to take on faith”.
“My Irish is not the only Irish thing they’ve done, but I feel it’s something I’m proud to have done.””
The people in Cork have really taken to it,” he added.
“My Irish is not the only Irish thing they’ve done, but I feel it’s something I’m proud to have done.”