Tony O’Malley was born in Callan, Co. Kilkenny in 1913. He worked for many years with the Munster and Leinster Bank but after contracting tuberculosis and spending long periods in hospitals, he retired from the bank. This led him in his forties to pursue a long desired career as a full time painter. For the next thirty years O’Malley lived in Cornwall where he came into contact with many of the leading figures in the community. In spite of his long exile, O’Malley is quintessentially an Irish artist, imbued with intense feelings for the tribe, the local and the family. Entirely self taught, he was obliged to invent his own visual language, to which he has always remained true.
Tony O’Malley died in January 2003 aged 89.
“Tony O’Malley was unquestionably one of this country’s greatest artists.
Those privileged to have known him on a personal level know him also
as an extraordinary, humane, philosophical and humble man.” John Daly 2002