Born in Oklahoma, Erin grew up in the Mid West of the US with her family. At the age of 15 and looking for a pen pal in Ireland – she found a boy that felt like her heart’s home, and at 17 years old she flew to Ireland to meet him in person. When Erin graduated high school, she packed her life into two bags and moved to Galway, where she now resides with her husband, their three children, and their cats.
A self-taught artist, Erin was raised in a creative household and was always encouraged to pursue her passions and dreams. She expresses herself through writing, painting, photography, and dabbling in hand crafts.
As a mother of three, Erin’s art has been influenced by her experiences in the multi-facets of motherhood. The feelings often explored in Erin’s work are of childhood nostalgia, the embodiment of home and security in our mother’s arms, and as mothers ourselves. She captures the empowerment of women, both fierce and sensual, and marries her art and activism in one. Some of Erin’s additional interests are in birth work and supporting women in their greatest times of need.
Erin is an activist for women’s rights – creating what became the largest grassroots campaign in Repealing the 8th Amendment in Ireland with In Her Shoes – Women of the Eighth. Her work inspires societal healing, diving into the taboo, and coming together with greater understanding and compassion for each other.
Erin’s favourite way to create is in the company of other creative women. She is the co-founder of Mother Maker Studios, a collaborative art group of artists and makers in East Galway, cultivating a space where women can continue their creative practice with their children underfoot.
*Photo by Julia Monard for Generation20
My artwork has been commissioned and published within JUNO Magazine since 2012.
This Early Spring edition of JUNO Magazine is the first ever publication with an illustrated cover. As the featured artist for this cover, I also contributed my writing with thoughts on being a Mother Maker.
In 2022 I have been commissioned for a total of three covers for JUNO Magazine, an incredible honour.
In 2022 I was commissioned by Kate Brennan-Harding Productions for a podcast series with RTE Jr called ‘Someone Like Me‘, a podcast featuring children and young people from Ireland, who have something unique they want to share with the world. Kate Brennan-Harding is joined every week by a different child who will meet and interview a grown-up that is a bit like them.
In September 2020 my first book ‘In Her Shoes’ was published with New Island Books. In this book, I tell my story of coming to Ireland and the creating of one of the largest grassroots campaigns for repealing the 8th Amendment. The book contains 32 anonymous contributing stories, highlighting the desperate need for autonomy in healthcare. It is my hope that this book honours the women that have shared their stories, and those that never could. It is my hope that this book inspires action in places where abortion is criminalized.
Women gather naturally…
When our history isn’t important enough for men to write it down in ink, we take to needle and thread, sewing ourselves into the quilts for our daughters and sons, telling stories in embroidery. When our histories are not safe to voice aloud, we ensure they are folded in the hems of skirts, sharp daggers tucked in hats. We will not go silently. We write our own history into legislation, into the Dail, in poems and books, in music and art. Our stories keep us alive.
…we wait. For centuries, we wait.
In 2019 I was selected among other artists for Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture Generation 20 Project.
‘Generation 20 is a photo and interview series focusing on the new wave of artists in Galway. With each interview and portrait, we aim to uncover their motivations, aspirations and frustrations. To get the full authentic picture and find their common link, bring them all together and into the light. How does their journey relate to Galway and where would they like to see it in 2020? We want to see the people in the budding stages of their expression, those that are quietly grafting and doing wonderful things.’