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Wagon Wheels - Johnny Murphy being interviewed in his wagon


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Wagon Wheels

Wagon Wheels is a short documentary by filmmaker Terence White about the folk art involved in painting barrel top wagons in County Wexford, and dedicated individuals who are helping to keep the tradition alive.

This documentary was launched in Wexford Arts Centre on Saturday 19th October 2019 to a packed audience.  Feedback from the film premiere was fantastic with very positive reviews.  Another positive outcome of the programme was over half the audience who attended the launch was made up by members of the Traveller community most who said it was their first time in an arts venue.  One of the main goals of Wexford County Council’s Creative Ireland programme is to celebrate and grow creativity in our communities and to develop a fully inclusive creative programme.

The two main film subjects were very happy to have their folk art documented and felt it was important that the dying art be recorded for posterity.

Pippy Firman said “This has been my hobby for years and I never realised the interest there would be in it.  The premiere was brilliant to tell the truth.  Better than expected and I’ve had great feedback since”

Jonny Murphy said “It was very nice to be involved.  It was important to the family and it was great to have it recorded for my children and grandchildren.”

This documentary is a prime example of how Creative Ireland celebrates Wexford’s culture and heritage.  It showcases the effort being made to keep the tradition of painting barrel top wagons alive.  It also highlights how this craft is an important part, not just to the Traveller heritage, but of the county’s heritage.  By highlighting these traditions and by passing on the craft and skills involved, this project aims to find a home with future generations.

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