Randall Exon Pennsylvania, USA, b. 1956

I am honored to have several works in the permanent collection of the Ballinglen Museum of Art.  The first piece of mine to be included in the archive was painted during my first fellowship at the Ballinglen Arts Foundation in the fall of 1997.  It is a small painting of John Early's sheds near Ballycastle pier with the tower of the Stella Maris beyond.  That first year coming to Ballycastle was a powerful experience for me as an artist.  The combination of light, ocean, cliffs and fields was simply inspiring.  I had traveled a fair bit too, but Mayo was beyond any experience I had experienced before.  Beyond the landscape, the village and the kindness of its people left a powerful impression on me.  So much so that my wife, Brenda, and I have returned every year since.  Only a pandemic stopped us from making it 23 consecutive years.  No other place has meant more to me or my career as an artist and now, no other place feels closer to home.  Our dearest friends are connected to the foundation.  I am deeply indebted to Margo Dolan and Peter Maxwell for their great vision to bring artists like me to this beautiful and mysterious place.             - Randall Exon