Colour Photos from Clare by Tony Kearns, 2012 & 2013


The Dublin photographer and film editor Tony Kearns is best known in Irish traditional music circles for his ongoing project of documenting the annual Willie Clancy Summer School in Miltown Malbay, Co Clare. He has been photographing performers and audiences there since 1991, and has built up an enormous archive of images from the School. The Irish Traditional Music Archive is pleased to hold many of these for public reference: at last count we have over 1,700 – our largest collection of pictures from any one source.

Most of these pictures are black-and-white, Tony Kearns’s favourite medium. This preference is seen also in his book A Touchstone for the Tradition: The Willie Clancy Summer School (with Barry Taylor; Dingle, Co Kerry: Brandon, 2003) and in his published art-book of photographs from the WCSS: Music & Light. Ceol & Solas: Irish Traditional Music Photography (Enniskerry, Co Wicklow: Silver Spear Press, 2008).

But Tony also explores the medium of colour photography in his work of documentation, and the selection of colour images presented here were taken by him at recent Willie Clancy Schools, in 2012 and 2013 when the School was in its 41st and 42nd years.

With thanks to Tony Kearns for permission to publish.

NC & TH, 1 August 2014

Colour Photos from Clare by Tony Kearns, 2012 & 2013