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RTÉ | Creative Ireland - Crown: Hair in Traveller Culture 

Crown beoir

Crown lakeen, Linenhall Arts Centre

These short films were created by the filmmaker Mia Mullarkey featuring the portrait exhibition and some of the Traveller/Mincéir women speaking of their connection to their hair. They speak about the physical appearance of their hair, traditions, and what it means to them and as an expression of unique Traveller identity.

The exhibition is part of a project entitled Crown - Hair and Identity which focuses on Traveller/Mincéiri women and girls and the subject of how hair is intrinsically linked to identity, ethnicity, culture and gender.

The exhibition draws its name from the Traveller language Gammon/Cant, with beoir meaning woman.


Crown beoir is presented in tandem with its sister exhibition Crown lakeen, which focuses on the girls who participated in the project and takes place at the Linenhall Arts Centre, Castlebar.

Crown - Hair and Identity was originated by Breda Mayock who worked with Traveller women and girls in the Maple Youth Centre, Ballinrobe, and Mayo Traveller Support Group. She worked with photographer Orla Sloyan, to photograph the women with a special emphasis placed on their hair. 

Support for this work is gratefully acknowledged from Creative Ireland Mayo, Mayo County Council Arts Service and the Healthy Ireland Fund. Learn how, in partnership with Traveller community representatives and others, Museum staff have worked on special projects and initiatives to make Traveller community history and heritage better known.

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