Biography

B. 1976. Ashleigh Downey is a visual artist currently living in Dublin. Formally trained as a textile designer at Central St. Martins, London (1995-98), Ashleigh has worked across disciplines in London, Cape Town and Dublin; as visual artist, curator, and facilitator.

Ashleighs artistic practice looks to mother nature as primary source, exploring her ever evolving relationship with man-kind. Using a variety of materials Ashleigh is like a magpie collecting all manner of fabrics, fibres, paper, earthly materials and those randomly found objects. She uses repeated patterns, colour, and elements of numerology to inform her artwork. Exhibited internationally, with one of her pieces recently becoming part of the Richard F. Brush Art Gallery permanent collection (Canton, NY.).

Combined with an active interest in audience participation and collaboration, Ashleighs most recent consideration lies with the exploration of art as a form of interactive engagement.

For the past 2 years Ashleigh has curated the Soul Kids area for the Body and Soul Festival (2012 & 2013) and the Electric Picnic (2013), Irelands most prestigious festivals. As former Visual Arts Programmer at The Ark, A Cultural Centre for Children (2008-11), Ashleigh has programmed and curated a number of flagship visual art projects and events. These include Crafted Creatures, a partnership programme with the Crafts Council of Ireland as part of The Year of Craft 2011; Earth Explorers, and Exhibit Me! Since 2001 Ashleigh has also been part of the artist panel at Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane, with workshops including Ireland at Venice 2010, and Curate Your Own Galley, part of Design Week 2010.

In collaboration with 2 other artists Ashleigh was awarded a Youth Arts Incubation Award 2012 by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council. She also co-curated Outside the Lines, a contemporary drawing exhibition for Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council in 2011. From 2006-08 was Assistant Curator to the Collection Department at The Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA), where exhibitions include, Three, The Burial of Patrick Ireland and Co-Curator of William Hogarth : Prints from the Madden Arnholz Collection.