Micky Donnelly was born in Belfast in 1952 and studied at the University of Ulster from 1976 to 1981 where he earned BA and MA Degrees in Fine Art. He died in 2019.
His paintings, drawings and installations are primarily concerned with the natural world and how humans perceive it. Employing references to landscape, they move easily between the historical and the contemporary, from East to West, between figurative elements and abstract gestures. Intentionally ambiguous, they imply an expanded set of influences and accommodate multiple readings. Writing on a new body of work in 2018, he quoted Proust: "[t]he true voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in possessing new eyes…".
Micky exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions in Ireland, Britain, Europe, New Zealand, Japan, Mexico, Canada and America, and his paintings have been included in a number of high-profile international survey exhibitions of Irish art. He received many awards and prizes, and spent time working in Italy, the USA, and New Zealand. A founder member of CIRCA Art Magazine, he wrote about contemporary art for various publications and published a novel in 2001.
In 1996 he was elected a member of Aosdána, and he taught at GMIT's Centre for Creative Arts & Media for many years. His work is included in many private and public art collections in Ireland, Europe, and the USA, including the Irish Museum of Modern Art, the Ulster Museum, the Arts Council of Ireland, the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, the Arts Council of England, the British Council, and the European Parliament.