The Arts Council has expressed its sadness at the passing of writer and Aosdána member Michael Viney.
Born in Brighton, England,1933, Michael Viney had a long career in television and as a journalist and is most widely known for his Another Life column in the Irish Times, which had its final instalment last February. This column chronicled his rural life and ecological affairs which began in 1977when he moved with his family to a remote smallholding at Thallabawn on the Mayo coast.
Prof. Kevin Rafter, Chair of the Arts Council, said today:
“The Arts Council is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of renowned writer Michael Viney. His work became especially known and loved by the Irish public through the inclusion of his Another Life pieces in the Irish Times. I am certain that his legacy will continue to inspire writers and audiences alike for generations to come. We send our deepest condolences to his family and friends.”
His book A Year’s Turning (1996) showed his creativity as an artist and a growing empathy with nature. Other publications include:Ireland:A Smithsonian Natural History (2003); A Living Island: Ireland’s Responsibility to Nature (2003) andA Wildlife Narrative (1999), which was written with his wife Ethna.
Among television films he devised and directed in the 1990s were documentary profiles of Michael Longley and Tim Robinson shown by RTE and Channel Four. In 2004 he received a D. Litt (Honoris Causa) from Trinity College, Dublin and in 2017 was elected to the Royal Irish Academy.
As well as being a master of words, the late journalist produced his own illustrations, drawings and paintings inspired by the Mayo landscape.
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