Michael Flaherty was born in Cloghane, Co. Kerry going on to graduate with a BA in Univeristy College Cork (UCC) and a Higher Diploma in Maynooth University (1974). It was after taking a year out that he realised he wanted to take up art as a profession and so took night classes at the Crawford until he was accepted into Sligo School of Art. It was here, under the instruction of John O’Leary, that he found his unique style.
After moving to Edinburgh he held his first one-man show (1982), before returning to Ireland the following year to concentrate on landscape painting. He is known for using thick layers of paint and bold, vibrant colours. Flaherty’s work focuses on landscapes from various scenes including Kerry and Tuscany, along with paintings of animals and heads with a strong scriptural element.