Marie Brett in collaboration with Katie Holly, commissioned by Cork Midsummer Festival, in partnership with Sirius Arts Centre.

Day of the Straws was made intensively over a 3 week period, during lock-down in Ireland, during June 2020. A huge number of conversations (online/phone calls) contributed to the piece, and the artists are indebted to the enthusiasm and generosity of people, many of whom they met for the first time in the making of this work.  The artwork is inspired by these conversations, and by many stories like (and including) 'Day of the Straws'.  It is a reflection of the collective experience of our communities in the past few months, but it also reaches back into past pandemics, to discover what part of the human experience made them similar, and different, to this one.  



Script: Katie Holly

Voice: Irene Kelleher

Sound: Cormac O’ Connor

Video Work: Marie Brett


Story of Ash: Bernadette M Knopek

Ballinspittle Moving Statue: Patricia Bowen

Apparition: Mary O’ Shea

Zoom Interview: Eddie Linehan

Story of Ash: Tony Manning

The Myth of Day Of The Straws: Bernadette M Knopek

Ash, Faith & Philosophy: Evelyn Richmond

Ash Symbolism, Family Memory & Covid-19: Siobhan King


Script: Katie Holly

Video Work: Lucia Pola


Video Work: Marie Brett

Photography (original source): Celtic Stickmakers Cork:

Stickmakers Ian James, Denis McSweeney, Matt O Connor
Pat O Sullivan, Joe Sheehan, Martin Thompson, Eugene Trindles

Sound: Clíona Ní Laoi. Mama Matrix Most Mystical - Full Moon Cleansing Bath 



Folk Cures Photography: Oein DeBhairduin

Vocal: Karina Healy

Video Work: Marie Brett

Health & Spiritual Healing, moving text: Freda Farrell

“The Kiss Of Death” Dr. Andrea Kitta

Audio: Dr. Michael Martin, BA, PhD  

Herbalist, Lay Homeopath, Author, Archdruid audio: Ellen Evert Hopman

Historian, member of 'The Covid Influencers Group’: and Influenza specialist: Dr Ide Milne


Video Work: Marie Brett & Lucia Pola


Harp & Vocal - Aisling Urwin (Recorded by Seán O’ Sullivan) 

Video Work: Marie Brett

Photography (original source): Betty Loughrey



Audio:  Freda Farrell

Moving text & audio: Martina Stronsoe

Hand Analysis: William Maloney 

Moving text : Helen D’Bharóid

Moving text & audio: Tia Anderson


Script: Katie Holly

Sound:  Marie Brett

Video:  Lucia Pola



Supernatural Footprint Story:  Tommy O’ Connor (accordian player), filmed by Karen Barry

Strawing video: Marie Brett 

Photography  (original sources): Heritage Crafts Alive, Steffi Otto, Karen Barry, Dú

Flute (Around the Fairy Fort, written by Vincent Broderick): Evelyn Broderick

Flute (Hag in the churn): Evelyn Broderick

Story of Strawing: Lisa O’ Sullivan & Karen Barry

Johnny Mickeys Slides: Lisa O’ Sullivan & Karen Barry

Fairytale Vocal: Eoin O’ Shea  

Covid-19 Song: Anonymous singer


Audio Script: Katie Holly

Voice: Irene Kelleher

Sound: Cormac O' Connor

Email Writing: Katie Holly

Email Sound:  Marie Brett


Vocals: Katie Holly

Photograph taken in home of Eamon & Catherine Holly:  Donncha McAuliffe & Marie Brett


Tea & Lemon Videos: Mary O’ Shea & Kate O’ Shea

“Hello from the Dog”: Bernice Glavin

A Covid Day, scrolling text:  Noreen Collins

Coping with Covid -19: Jon Holford

The Feminine Arts: Tricia O Connor

Celtic Druidism & ‘The Morrigan’ reading: Ellen Evert Hopman, The Sacred Herbs of Samhain​,

Conversation & Pandemic Psychological Effects, scrolling text: Bernie Dwyer



Lucia Pola


Kath Gorman & Kate O’ Shea


We would additionally like to thank


Evelyn O' Keefe, Nancy Falvey,  Karina Healy, Dr. Ida Milne, Pat O Sullivan, Eugine Trindles, Clodagh O Donovan, Tricia O’ Connor, Ellen Evert Hopman, Dr. Andrea Kitta, Susan Darcy, Elizabeth Cornyn, Denis O’ Sullivan, Willie Maloney, Dympna Collins, Noreen Collins, Dr Michael Martin, Mary O’ Dea, Miguel Amado, John Hennessy, Eddie Lenihan, Julie Malone, Evelyn Broderick, Aisling Urwin, Sean O’ Sullivan, Dr Cliona O'Carroll, Eoin O’ Shea, Dr Críostóir Mac Cárthaigh, Micheal F Kiely, Lillian O'Leary,  T.J. Manning, Teresa McCarthy, Lisa O’ Sullivan, Karen Barry, Bernice Jones, Timmy O’ Connor, Jim Barry, Sheila Barry, Betty Loughrey, Marie Loughrey, Patricia Bownen, Jon Holford, Eve Olney, Evelyn Richmond, Julie Murphy, Brenda Barry, Colette Lewis, Claire Ryan, Clodagh Piper, Veronica Kelleher, Vanessa Kelleher, Charleville Historic Society and all at Cork Midsummer Festival and Sirius Arts Centre. 


This artwork includes credits for all known information regarding the original creators of items not produced by the core artistic team.  This project has made every effort to contact the original creator of any copyrighted content for permission of use.  The project would welcome hearing from anyone who may have additional information regarding the uncredited items in this artwork.


To contact us in relation to the above or in general about the project please contact Kath Gorman, Cork Midsummer Festival. She can be reached at

Day of the Straws is a residency and small-scale public platform as part of a European partnership project, BE PART, Art BEyond PARTicipation; with the support of the Creative Europe programme of the European Union and The Arts Council.


Day of the Straws is included in the TransCultural Exchange ‘Hello World’ international arts project.