Connemara & Aran Shortlisted For Major Irish Book Award

By November 13, 2017April 25th, 2021No Comments
A bitter-sweet moment for Connemara-based publishers as Connemara & Aran by Walter Pfeiffer and published by Artisan House is included in An Bord Gáis Irish Book Awards Shortlist announced today.

Connemara & Aran, published in June 2017 by Artisan House Connemara, is shortlisted in the Best Irish Published Book category.

“To be included in the shortlist of the flagship event for the Irish book industry is a tremendous honour for us, especially when we see the quality of the company we are enjoying here today.  To be shortlisted for this particular title is a bitter-sweet moment.  Our much-loved author, Walter Pfeiffer, died unexpectedly last April and never did get to see his book in physical form.  Another contributor, the poet Josie Guairim from Carna, also died suddenly last February.  However for the families of both, we know this will bring some satisfaction and provides a fitting legacy for their work.” stated Mary Ruddy of Artisan House, publishers of Connemara & Aran.

The 176-page bookConnemara & Aran, is a visual chronicle of landscape and seascape images taken by Walter Pfeiffeover the past four years.  It includes poems from Eva Bourke, Moya Cannon, Michael Coady, Eamon Grennan, Josie Guairim, Joan McBreen, Máire Áine Ní Dhiréain and Mary O’Malleycontemporary poets who are similarly familiar with and fascinated by the west coast of Ireland. The foreword is by archaeologist Michael Gibbonswhose deep knowledge and familiarity with the area greatly enhances the book.


Vincent Murphy of Artisan House, a close friend of Walter, said  ‘Walter was very excited by this particular title Connemara & Aran. It was a visit to Aran in 1964, when he was only 20 years, that proved life-changing.  So enchanted was he by the landscape, the light, the people, that he left his native Germany and moved to live in Ireland the following year and lived here until his untimely death in April of this year’.  
Members of the public are invited to vote for the book via the following website :
Voting closes at midnight 23rd November 2017

In addition to the paperback edition is a limited special hardback edition which includes a CD with each poet reading their own work, a recorded introduction by Walter and music by harpist and composer, Kathleen Loughnane.  

Photographer/ author: Walter Pfeiffer 

Walter Pfeiffer was one of Ireland’s foremost photographers.  While in his early twenties, he first visited Ireland, travelling from his native Cologne in Germany.  In that summer of 1964, he spent three weeks on the Aran Islands. That experience made an irreversible impact, so much so that he returned the following year and has since made his home in Ireland. The unspoilt landscape, the ever-changing light, the sense of personal freedom and a spiritual connection to the people and the place continues. 

Photographic concepts developed by Walter include the hugely popular series of Irish posters. Doorways of Ireland, Irish Writers Irish Cottages, and Irish Dressers are amongst those to be seen in virtually every Irish public premises. They were also a big hit internationally and the idea has since been copied worldwide. 

Walter has created with Vincent Murphy two highly regarded landscape photography books: Wicklow: A Personal View (2000) and Connemara & Beyond (2005).  His photographs have appeared in numerous books and publications including In the Houses of Ireland (Thames Hudson/Stuart Tabori Chang, Abrams 1988); In an Irish Garden; Irland un art de vivre (Flammarion 1986); Irish Cottages (London Weidenfield & Nicolson 1990) and Celebrating Irish Salmon(Artisan House 2013) 


Publisher: Artisan House

Award-winning Artisan House is based in Letterfrack, Connemara, Co. Galway.
Established in 2013 Artisan House create beautifully illustrated high-quality books and bespoke publications on a richly diverse range of subjects including food and lifestyle, photography and the visual arts, music and poetry.  In 2016, they won the World Gourmand Best in the World Seafood Book for their title Sea Gastronomy by Michael O’Meara.
Creative Director:  Vincent Murphy   Editorial Director: Mary Ruddy