News and Reviews

Not having the discipline and stamina to maintain a blog, here are a few items of news and reviews of different events and occasions happening in the real world, online and in publications.

For updates of available sales please click the top right shopping trolley link.

Distance Dancing

Nov 2020 

On a brisk November morning it was lovely to get out and about with the Distance Dancers in Wallace Park, Lisburn with Anthea McWilliams. Commissioned to document the antics of the group, as they sashayed, skipped and lock stepped their way around the circuit. A wonderful morning with wonderful light.


July 2020 

Over the Covid 19 lockdown period I took the opportunity to create an online shop. All the items are one off, original pieces, hand made and developed from a variety of projects. This a new experience and will be adding to the stock over time.

I also have decorative porclain wall plaques for sale on There are two different syles, The Old School House Range and Farm House Range. 

Items also available on Etsy in ZaraLynessStudio

Personalised tiles are available, please get in touch with me to discuss designs.

Brooklyn Art Library

Aug 2020

Motivation during the Covid 19 lock down period was challenging. As a way to keep motivated and drawing I took part in the Boston Sketchbook Project. My sketchbook developed into a timeline of events during the period of restricted travelling. The sketchbook should be available to view online from September 2020. 

Homework  at PS2

June 2020

Many artists during the Covid 19 lock down period had restricted or no access to studios, facing a shift in practice and process. Working from home has pros and cons, and old chairs find themselves under more pressure than usual. My old university studio chair had to undergo some vital repairs and was included on Instagram posts during lock down. I appreciated the invitation from PS2 Gallery to take part in their online Home Work Project, sharing the wide range of work we were making in these very unusual times.

Holding Love and Light

Jan 2020

Holding, Catching Love and Light was a commissioned solo performance made for the book launch for Holding Love and Light  by Bronagh Lawson. The event was held in the Irish Architectural Archive in Dublin. Including performance art during the launch proved to make it an unusual experience for those attending and resulted in several interesting conversations during the evening.

Belfast Botanic Gardens

Sept 2019

In September 2019 I was delighted to install 6 porcelain Cryptolaemus Montouzieri in the ground floor area of the refurbished Tropical Ravine House in the Botanical Gardens in Belfast as a permanent installation.

The Australian Mealybug, or Mealybug Ladybird, is used as an ecological predator in the Ravine House, Palm House and greenhouses.

After several visits to the gardens and greenhouses I was curious about the white dots on some of the plants. The experienced gardeners were very helpful and explained how the larvae, that look the same as the pests to the naked eye, are the preferred method of pest control, reducing the need for pesticides in the delicate environment maintained for the plants.

The porcelain bugs will be used as part of the educational aids during school visits to the House. I could hear them being named as I left, one is called Bruce, another Sheila....

On The Way

Jan 2020

For the Bbeyond On the Way project I made a new solo work based on my MFA research. Themed on identity and freedom and located in the border town of Newry, this work focused on issues of boundaries, restriction and traumatic memory.

Expanded Studio Project

Aug 2019

Between April and September 2019 I took part in the Expanded Studio Project involving 6 studios from Belfast and Primary Studios, Nottingham. The project ran exhibitions of the work produced at PS2 Gallery, Belfast and Primary Studios, Nottingham.

Artist Talk at Pollen Gallery

Feb 2019

I was delighted to give some artist talks to the Amanda Croft ArttalksArtwalks group that visited the Odd Collection exhibition. As curator and exhibitor, it was great to be selected as part of their selected exhibition to visit.

ACNI Funding

Sept 2018

Thanks to the Arts Council of Northern Ireland I am delighted to be awarded the full amount from the Support for the Individual Artist programme. The funding will help towards equipment and development in ceramic skills.

Féile An Phobail

Mar 2018

Upper Springfield Development Trust community project Selfie Swap. Participants from Springvale College and the Fallswater Day Centre made a series of mixed media work that was included in the Féile An Earraigh Visual Arts Exhibition held in St Mary's University College. Project artists Tonya McMullan and Zara Lyness

Degree Show Review

July 2017

Circa Art Magazine, writers choice review by Moran Been-Noon.


Dec 2015

Murmuration - Pollen Studios and Gallery

A live sound performance. Seven starlings are being watched by seven starlings each, this is Murmuration. Listen and follow, watch and followand let the sound tell you how to fly. 

Video at

Belfast International Festival of Performance Art

Mar 2015

As a first year fine art student I took part in the Helge Meyer performace art workshop. My first real experience of performance art had a huge influence on my practice and Helge was a great artist to start the process. I will always be grateful to him.

Tangible Selves

Sept 2020

Latest workshop project

Lead artist: Zara Lyness

Curator: Moran Been Noon

Tangible Selves aims to recognise different methods of creating a thoughtful self-portrait. Moving away from the traditional face, head and shoulders or selfie image, the participants will explore different methods and materials to create art work that creates alternative representations of themselves individually and as a group. Tangible Selves will explore how different materials and objects can be recognised as proxies that trigger memories and recollection and help us evolve how we think about ourselves. Through conversation, performance, drawing, sculpting, and assemblage, a series of objects, drawing and sound work will be produced that reflect the personalities and identities of each participant and how they engage with each other.
The work-process and outcomes of this project will be shown between 12 - 28 November 2020 in PS².

Buoy Park Art Podcast

Sept 2020

Stepping in to the 21st century

Hosted by Oonagh McAteer and Zara Lyness, Buoy Park Art is a podcast full of chat about art and artists in Northern Ireland and beyond. Meeting on the Fine Art Master’s Course in Ulster University, Oonagh (BA Photography) and Zara (BA Fine Art) started the podcast as a relaxed platform to encourage inclusive discussions about art and artists and to extend a support network to independent and rural artists at all career stages. The podcasts include invited guests talking about their work and interests and introducing different topics each week, along with the ups and downs of the life or an emerging artist.

The podcast available on Spotify, Pocketcasts, Google Podcasts, Radiopublic, Breaker and more.

You can contact the artists directly on Instagram @buoyparkart, @oonaghmcateer and @z.lyness or email

MFA Instagram takeover

July 2020

I took part in the Belfast School of Art Master's of Fine Art instagram takeover. Collaborating with Andy Athansiou, a 2nd year student from Greece, we exchanged images and ideas online during the Covid 19 lock down period to create a body of work.


Mar 2020

Opening in March 2020, ArtsFest was a group exhibition run by an artist collective and hosted in Arts For All in Belfast. This was an opportunity to showcase work from different projects together in a new way. 

Art Mutation Online

Apr 2020

Starting from one image by one artist, this campaign has gone global through personal invitations from one artist to another. Referencing the image that is received, each artist creates a new piece of work and shares it with another who then creates another mutation. 'Uncertain Landscape' was inspired by the work of Elaine McGinn, the irish artist that invited me to join in. Art work is regularly added to the web page. All the work can be viwed in an online gallery at

Back to School

Sept 2019

After taking a break from studying I was accepted on to the Belfast School of Art Master's of Fine Art degree course. Very much looking forward to accessing the university facilities again along with stimulating conversations with staff and peers.

Home School Art

Nov 2019

A riot of noise a colour, in November 2019 R-space hosted a series of workshops for children schooled at home. The workshops involved the children responding to the exhibition running in the space, Figures in a Landscape, selected works from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland collection. While toddlers drew and played with airdry clay the older children worked in collage and stoneware clay.

Engage Gallery Online

May 2019

I was invited to exhibit and make performance work for the opening exhibition at the new Engae Studio Gallery in Galway. The Engage Gallery blog posts include details of the exhibition and an interview with the curator, Moran Been-Noon.

Ulster Star Interview

Mar 2019

I ran a beginner ceramics workshop in R-Space Gallery, Lisburn in March 2019 and it was lovely to have local journalist Julie Ann Spence there with her mum. I get participants to make their own pieces from scratch so they really feel their work is their own. A couple of weeks after the workshop Julie wrote a review for the Ulster Star

Changing Environments

June 2018

Upper Springfield Development Trust community project with artists Lucy Turner, Charlotte Bosenquet, Zara Lyness and storyteller Ruth Graham in conjunction with Ark Housing's Moyard House, Rosevale House and Falls Womens' centre. Photograph courtesy of Joshua Crawford

In Flux -It's All about Me

July 2017

I was delighted to have my work in the Belfast School of Art Degree Show reviewed by Slavka Sveralova

Goose Lane Gallery

Sept 2016

Goose Lane Gallery was an unfunded, voluntary gallery project that ran for over 3 years. Supporting emerging artists, with over 80 participating artists, it was great to be recognised and receive some positive feedback for our work during the Belfast Culture Night 2016.

Piece of Paper Press

Apr 2015

I was pleased to find a mention of my performance reading of Tony White's 'The Holburn Cenotaph' mentioned on his blog. I was even more surprised to receive a signed copy of his book shortly afterwards.

©2020 by Zara Lyness Visual Artist.