Cathy Hayes' lavishly expressive paint and mixed media work is the culmination of a multifarious assemblage of tropical, metropolitan, vernacular and cultivated influences. The effortless structure within the work and naturally harmonious framing of the figures against their backdrops is surely embedded in her previous architecture practice and training. The fluidity of the paint as it seems to seep and cascade across the canvas, is perhaps attributed to the enduring significance of the ocean within the artists’ life. The rich and vivacious use of audacious colour palettes certainly find origin in a life lived in dynamic mix of cultures and countries, including South America, China, Myanmar, Uzbekistan. Throughout these travels, Hayes photographed and painted the experiences of herself, her baby daughter and husband, embedding them into her intuitive perspective.

Hayes’ artistic training initiated in the Chelsea School of Art, however it was some years later, on settling in the Bahamas her art practice took a central role. It was here, while formally retraining at a local art college, that Hayes' practice truly began to imbue the emboldened, expressive emotion that we see in her work today. As early as her first exhibit, her work was acquired into The D’Aguilar Foundation collection. On returning to Ireland some years later, Hayes began to apply her inimitable perspective and training within this new societal context. The result has been a playful and spirited inquisition into the society’s persistent emphasis on women’s relationship with themselves, art history, violence and the idea of reclaiming women’s power through re-imaging myths and stories from the past. Hayes explored these motifs through her Masters in Painting at UAL Camberwell College of Art, London, which she completed in 2020.

Hayes’ work is regularly acquisitioned into private collections and has been acquired by public collections including the Office of Public Works, Ireland and the National Self-Portrait Collection of Ireland, which commissioned her self-portrait in 2018. Her work continues to be exhibited internationally with increasing momentum, already catalogued at Art Miami, John Cacciola, New York and The Royal Ulster Academy.