Bernadette Madden studied Fine Art at the National College of Art & Design. Awarded a scholarship to Paris by the Department of Education in 1970, Madden had her first solo show in 1971 and has continued to win awards since. Awards include the MacAuley Fellowship in Painting by the Arts Council in 1976, commended in the Mont Kavanagh Award for Environmental Art and in Church Art Competition organised by Dublin Diocese in 1983. In 1984 Madden was appointed to the Board of National College of Art and Design by the Minister for Education.
In 1998 she was appointed to Cultural Relations Committee (to promote Irish Art abroad) by the Minister for Foreign Affairs. The same year Batik “2000” was used as the millennium symbol by the Diocese of Dublin. In 1999 her “St. John” batik was presented to his Holiness Pope John Paul II by President Mary McAleese, and more recently in 2000 her “St.Benedict” wall hanging was presented by An Taoiseach Bertie Ahern to his Holiness Pope Benedict XVI. In 2009 Madden’s self-portrait was acquired by the National Portrait Collection in Limerick University and in 2010 she was selected as one of two hundred artists in Robert O Byrne’s Dictionary of Irish Artists. She is renowned for her excellent batiks and her wonderful collection of screenprints.