Killyleagh artist Duxy Leahy is showing his painting in the Grove Gallery in the St Patrick Centre in Downpatrick through October
Take a gander at “A Wee Dander” at the painting exhibition by Killyleagh artist Duxy Leahy now showing in the St Patrick Centre in Downpatrick.
You can listen to Duxy in conversation on the Down about Down Podcast (October 2023 – see below) with Chris Scott.
In the latest episode of the Down about Down Podcast, host Chris Scott, is in conversation with talented Killyleagh artist, Darren ‘Duxy’ Leahy who has his latest works of art displayed at the prestigious Saint Patrick Centre in Downpatrick.
Duxy has named his latest exhibition “A Wee Dander“, and he describes the display as “Places I’m going and things I have seen. Walks I took part in and places I’ve been.”
The paintings on display portray a number of local scenes, both from the countryside and seasides.
You will instantly recognise many local places of interest including Downpatrick Cathedral, Saul Church and Struell Wells.
You cannot fail to notice an unnamed figure out for a stroll in some of the paintings.
Duxy refers to him as “the dandering man.” There may well be a likeness to the artist, but he refuses to be drawn on this!
Some time ago it was suggested to Duxy that he should put a figure into the paintings, but he admits that he struggled with figure painting at that time.
He said: “When you are teaching people to do art, and the mindfulness that comes with the art classes that I do, you tell people to step out of their comfort zone.
“That is how you learn. I wasn’t doing it myself,” he explained to Chris. After a rethink, it was time to overcome that struggle, and ‘the dandering man’ appeared on the canvases.”
Despite having a number of exhibitions under his belt, Duxy still finds the experience a little nerve wrecking. He added: “It’s a little bit nerve wrecking, but an honour to have paintings hanging in the galleries where a lot of great artists have displayed their works.”
Duxy’s art journey began during his last two years at Down Academy. “Trevor Woods was my art teacher. A fantastic teacher,” he recalls. “Art was the only subject I excelled at.”
Duxy attained an A grade with merit for his O Level art, inspiring him to follow painting as a career. He recalls that the first painting he sold, for the sum of ten pounds, was at the age of 16 when he was at school.
After a brief attempt at A-Level art, he found life pulling him in a different direction. He did have the occasional request from friends and family to paint.
Duxy received his first commission for a sketch in 1996. Later he sold his first international work despite having been ‘criticised’ by an esteemed artist.
Duxy believes that a little bit of self-doubt is grounding.
He has spoken to Chris Scott about this on a number of occasions in previous podcasts.
Earlier in his career, he had always dreamt of having an exhibition but he felt that his paintings were not up to standard. “I thought my paintings weren’t good enough and I wasn’t worth it.
“There was a time when things in my life had slipped very badly and I had reached my lowest point.”
Duxy at that point sought help for his severe depression and anxiety and he managed to change his life around, continuing his journey in a new direction.
In this podcast, Duxy shares some valuable words of wisdom with the listeners. “If you can change one thing in your life, change it. It will lead to other things changing.”
The beauty of our surrounding County Down countryside is captured perfectly by the brushstrokes of one of most exciting artists.
The exhibition continues at the St. Patrick Centre, Downpatric, throughout the month of October.
The Down about Down Podcast has now over 14,000 downloads. Within the first twelve hours of the latest edition going live it had been downloaded across the UK, United States, Australia, Ireland and Portugal.
For further information on Duxy’s work go to his Facebook page (My Gallery. Duxy Leahy):
The latest edition of the Down about Down podcast can be accessed on Spotify at: