From Strabane to Saatchi - with love

Tracey O'Neill from Strabane, who is now selling her work through the prestigious Saatchi Online.

Tracey O'Neill from Strabane, who is now selling her work through the prestigious Saatchi Online.

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Art is Tracey O’Neill’s passion. She readily admits she permanently has a whiff of paint about her - and that there is always a fine layer of paint under her fingernails.

Her home studio, she says, is cluttered with artwork everywhere . She is always thinking about her next project as she hunts out pre-loved jewellery pieces or works on her latest masterpiece.

The Strabane woman wouldn’t have it any other way.

“It’s amazing - it doesn’t even feel like work. It’s something I just love so much,” she said.

It has also proven to be remarkably successful for the mum-of-three.Her work has recently been selected for sale by the prestigious Saatchi Art online collection. Other works have sold as far afield as America and Australia.

The mixed media artist has said she has become increasingly busy, despite the economic downturn.

“I’ve been amazed things haven’t slowed down,” she said. “In fact it has gone busier. People still seem willing to pay for certain luxury items.”

The key to Tracey’s success has no doubt been the inventive way she has grown her business. Famous for her use of recycled jewellery to make stunning bespoke pieces, Tracey has recently made a number of very personal pieces.

“I have had a client whose mother died very suddenly, who brought me some of her old jewellery to use. And a bride who sent me her tiara and wedding jewellery to use for a personal piece.”