Having originally trained as a book designer, he worked for many years as a community artist in both Westport and London. He trained in signwriting and graining and marbling at the London College of Building in the 1980s, and worked for many years in the sign trade.
On returning to Ireland in 1990 he continued working as a signwriter and community artist, running workshops and facilitating arts projects with a wide variety of groups in both formal and informal settings.
He wrote his PhD (2006) on the history and theoretical framework of community arts, especially in Ireland, and began lecturing at the GMIT in 2004.
Recent projects include: curating (with Fergus Kelly) Volumes of Character, an exhibition of printed books at the Linenhall Arts Centre, Castlebar (2011), a chapter in Gary Granville (ed), Art Education and Contemporary Culture, (Intellect, London, 2012); Salvation through Art?, a research project examining art education in Portlaoise Prison (2009-12); and City (Re)Searches, exploring cultural rights in Cork, Derry, Kaunas and Rotterdam (2012-14), as well as reviews of various shows in a range of publications.
In the past two years he has explored homemade letterpress, building his own press and cutting woodtype.