Alice Maher

Written by Andrew Behan on . Posted in Artists

The Diviner

 

Alice Maher is one of Irelands foremost contemporary artists. Her first major solo show was at the Douglas Hyde Gallery in 1994. That same year she represented Ireland at the Sao Paolo Biennale. Maher continued to exhibit consistently in group and solo exhibitions and in 2012 the Irish Museum of Modern Art presented a retrospective of her work, Becoming, which included many iconic works as well as a newly commissioned film and a monograph. Maher is currently showing at EVA International (2016) with a two-screen film, Cassandra’s Necklace (2). Her work is held in many Irish and international collections including the Neuberger Museum, New York, the Hammond Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MoMA, New York, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, the British Museum, London and the Georges Pompidou Centre, Paris.

More information available at alicemaher.com

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Kathy Tynan

Written by Harry on . Posted in Artists

 

‘Through the activities of walking and looking Tynan identifies alternative landmarks in the city, places to rest the eyes that give rise to contemplation. She observes and informally records visual quirks in her surroundings and such vagaries are later bestowed with temporal emphasis through the medium of paint. In the cracks of a pebble dashed wall and across a layer of uneven plaster, real world surfaces and textures appear elevated through keen observation. She focuses on time-ravaged parts of the city that maintain a patina of the past through neglect. Slogans and symbols scrawled or sprayed across gable ends, crows looking on, trinkets in a stranger’s porch; all distract from the path ahead. She transforms the world into signs and symbols in the search for pattern and meaning. Intricate meshing of woolen yarn forms a pattern that draws the eye downwards into a stare, a puddle in the footpath interrupts the Moroccan motif and in its reflection spring buds sprout from bare branches.

In Italo Calvino’s 1985 novel, Mr Palomar, the eponymous protagonist wanders, giving thought to details in his surroundings. Calvino, via Mr Palomar, suggests that this tendency evolves from a psychological urge to make meaning. Everywhere there is the potential for philosophising and Mr Palomar appropriates the most mundane aspects of his daily routine to pose questions on the nature of being. In his musings on a rooftop terrace he considers the aspect from which birds view the ground, noting how unforeseen fragments and wholes that can be observed from above ‘It is only after you have come to know the surface of things,’ he says out loud, ‘that you venture to seek what is underneath’ then he adds ‘but the surface is inexhaustible’. Similarly Tynan responds to the possibilities of the surface texture of paint, its ability to mimic real-world surfaces. Like Mr Palomar, Tynan looks for clues in unlikely places – the most trivial encounter has the potential to announce the most profound epiphany’.

Extracted from Within and Without by Ingrid Lyons

More information available on artist’s website.

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Richard Proffitt

Written by Harry on . Posted in Artists

Richard Proffitt’s atmospheric assemblages and installations are eerily accurate representations of the sanctuaries and relics used by cults, tribes, hippies, and loners in their attempts to communicate with otherworldly energies. We encounter intensely detailed shrines illuminated with sinister red darkroom lamps or flashing disco lights, burnt-out campfires with infinitely looped chants and mantras, ramshackle shelters plastered with anarchist newspapers, medicine wheels sprinkled with sage and incense, and collages of record covers, psychedelic posters and drug paraphernalia.

Throughout all of Proffitt’s work, ordinary objects, scraps of discarded junk, and obsessively collected artifacts are crafted and altered into tools of divination or magic. Wire hubcap rings are reconfigured into elaborate dream-catchers with feathers, bones, cassette-tape, and pin-badges dangling like talismans. Totemic icons and fetishes are fashioned from crude bits of driftwood, bones and charity shop treasures. What appear to be ancient slates with silvery etched primitive drawings are absurdly revealed to be painted foil crisp-packets.

– extracted from a text by Michael Hill.

Richard Proffitt’s recent exhibitions have included A Modern Panarion, Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane; Take Me To The Other Side, Pallas Projects, Dublin; Eternal Spirit Canyon (solo), The Joinery, Dublin; Rendezvous 11/12, Institute of Contemporary Art, Lyon and National Gallery, Cape Town.

 

Links to previous shows;

Wild cries of Ha-Ha, 8 January – 6 February 2015

Group Exhibition – ALL DAYER, 12 – 21 September 2013 

Robert Armstrong

Written by Lara on . Posted in Artists