About ‘A Belfast Blog’

A Belfast Blog is initiated by Sophie Hayles and Jonathan Brennan. The blog is our starting point for the city. Through opinions pieces (‘pinions), interviews and reviews, we capture the things that we find excellent, joyful, confusing and distinctive about Belfast and Northern Ireland.

A Belfast Blog: Sophie Hayles © Aptalops

Sophie is an arts professional – fundraiser, project director, cultural relations specialist. She has lived and worked in London, Brussels, Paris, Rome, Aarhus, Jordan and Oman. Educated in modern languages, she has worked predominantly in the visual arts, beginning her career in a start up contemporary art gallery, moving to Brussels to work for the British Council, to London for the Whitechapel Gallery and to Aarhus Denmark for a European Capital of Culture. She moved to Belfast in November 2015.

A Belfast Blog: Jonathan Brennan © Aptalops

Jonathan Brennan (a.k.a. Aptalops) grew up in Dublin, Ireland. He studied Art History and Spanish at Trinity College Dublin which is also where he completed his Masters. An artist specialising in print, video and web, he has worked in Dublin, Brussels and Belfast. Jonathan works with various visual media such as printmaking, painting and photography. Digital technology can sometimes play a role in the process of creating his works. He is preoccupied by the relationship between digital and traditional techniques, and the values we bestow on them. He currently lives in Belfast with his wife and three young children.