Culture Minister Carál Ní Chuilin has paid tribute to Glengormley-born artist Basil Blackshaw, who passed away on May 2 at the age of 84.
Mr Blackshaw, born in Glengormley in 1932, was raised in Boardmills, County Down. A former pupil of Methodist College, Belfast and the city’s Art College, he became an associate of the Royal Ulster Academy of Arts in 1977 and won an award for his “sustained contribution to the visual arts in Ireland” in 2001.
He was famed for his paintings of rural scenes and portraits of leading writers and politicians.
Expressing her sadness at Mr Blackshaw’s death, Carál Ní Chuilin commented: “Basil was without question the most outstanding Irish painter of his generation and his passing is a tremendous loss to the artistic world. He was a prodigious talent and his paintings reflected his rural upbringing. His works will stand the test of time and he has left a wonderful legacy for the current and future generations.”
Northern Ireland artist Colin Davidson also paid tribute to Mr Blackshaw. He tweeted: “My hero has died. Thank you Basil Blackshaw. Rest in peace.”