As It Goes | Joe Scullion | 04.10-27.10.2018

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Joe Scullion

 

In As it Goes, interiors and exteriors merge, voids and forms are interchangeable and within the pictorial plane, perceptual slippages occur. Spatial boundaries assert and digress continually, creating an assemblage of fragmentary gestures that affirm a cohesive whole. These paintings celebrate dream logic and the capacity of images to describe the subconscious, intangible and metaphysical experience.

Within his practice, Scullion endeavours to make a painting without deciding what the completion of that painting might entail or how the final image will announce itself. Instead he allows the paintings to settle for periods of time after working on them, acknowledging specific chance elements that have come to exist within the paintings, independent of his own intentionality. His deferential attitude toward the use of paint as a medium allows each work to develop its own character, with flourishes, nuances and details that are particular to each composition, affording them a certain capriciousness. They are believable and convincing whilst being simultaneously nonsensical, in this way they retain their humour and lightness. Scullion is interested in the idea of nonsense, how we order truth and illusion, and the visual criteria for both. He is interested in the creation of images with such verisimilitude as to produce a trompe l’oeil. Scullion’s paintings are willfully disorientating and incorporate fictional architecture and landscape. There are aspects of the image that we trust, but simultaneously know to be illogical.

 

 

borderline | Elaine Byrne | 06.09-29.09.2018

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Elaine Byrne

borderline

6th -29th September, 2018

Why do nation-states desire walls? What do walls promise to secure, protect, contain or keep at bay? These are questions Elaine Byrne interrogates in her new work, borderline.

As nations are building fortified boundaries at an accelerating rate, Byrne uses photography and sculpture to examine the anxieties of sovereign impotence such “walling” betrays. Her work layers impossible perspectives and excavates the motivations for constructing these barriers. Traversing boundaries from Tijuana, Mexico to Melilla in Spain, Byrne reflects that, on the surface, these walls vary in what they aim to deter –workers or asylum seekers; drugs, weapons, terror; ethnic or religious mixing—yet there are common dimensions to their proliferation at this moment in world history.

Often, the true purpose for constructing fortified barriers is not one of national security but economics. Each of the new boundary can be seen to issue from certain pressures on states exerted by globalisation, where a globalised world harbors fundamental tensions between opening and enclosing. These tensions materialise a contradiction between increasingly liberalised borders on the one hand, and the devotion of unprecedented funds and energies to border fortification on the other.

Apart from what they purport to ‘do,’ border walls respond to the effect of declining sovereignty and in part to fantasies and anxieties by generating a national imaginary. Plumbing the visual and psychic dimensions of these forms, borderline examines how the spectacle of a wall gratifies a wish for sovereignty to be restored to the people and the state.

Byrne’s artwork has been exhibited nationally and internationally. She has presented work at Rosenbach Museum and Library, Philadelphia; Slought Foundation, Philadelphia; Elizabeth Foundation, New York; ISCP, New York; Montoro12 gallery, Rome; Limerick City Gallery, UAM, Mexico amongst others. She was awarded the RHA Curtin O’Donoghue Emerging Artist Photography prize and was winner of 8th Arte Laguna Venice sculpture prize (2014) and the TINA prize (2015). She was awarded a studio at ISCP in NY as part of their ground floor program. Her work is in permanent collections including: the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Pennsylvania; the Rosenbach Museum and Library, Pennsylvania; Office of Public Works and The Department of Foreign Affairs, Ireland. She has an MA in Visual Arts Practices from IADT, Dublin and was a 2014-2015 Fellow at the Whitney Independent Study Program.

Bounty | Diana Copperwhite and Aileen Murphy | 09.08-01.09.2018

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Diana Copperwhite and Aileen Murphy

Bounty

August 9th – September 1st, 2018
Opening reception Thursday August 9th

Bounty comprises recent work by Diana Copperwhite and Aileen Murphy. The impetus to show the work side by side has arisen from the mutual admiration and affinities that exist between the two artists in their subject matter and their handling of the medium of paint.

Both Copperwhite and Murphy create works that incorporate aspects of abstraction and figuration and both painters are fully taken up with the act of painting and the materiality of paint. There are also similarities in their approach and while the paintings often appear intuitive and whimsical, they evolve through layers of assertion and contradiction. Their scale and the movement within these works demonstrate a spontaneous and frenetic pace of activity that is further heightened by their relation to each other in the space.

Island Life | Summer Group Exhibition 18 | 05.07-28.07.2018

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Island Life

Summer Group Exhibition 2018
5th – 28th July
Opening Reception Thursday 5th July at 6pm

Sonia Shiel, Kathy Tynan, Marcel Vidal, Mark Swords, Salvatore of Lucan, Joe Scullion, Robert Armstrong, Julia Dubsky, Lesley-Ann O’Connell, Pat Byrne, Stephen Loughman, Cecilia Danell, William O’Neill and Stephanie Deady

Island Life comprises work by artists who are making and showing paintings at the moment. It is intended as a celebration of where painting is at now in Ireland, with a mixture of emerging and more established artists.

Painting exists in an increasingly sophisticated visual world that sometimes seems to have a diminishing interest in the possibilities of paint. Island Life is concerned with the idea that, within the medium of paint there are opportunities for the individual to question the situation we live in and the resources we share. The paintings in this exhibition address the human condition and each of the artists suggests the capacity of the medium of paint to encompass both personal and universal concerns.

Kilkenny Festival Portraits 2015-17 | Mick O’Dea | 07.06-30.06.2018

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Kilkenny Festival Portraits 2015-17

Mick O’Dea

7th –  30th June, 2018

From 2015 -17 Mick O’Dea was visual artist-in-residence at Kilkenny Arts Festival.  For this unique three-year project he painted daily oil portraits of leading Irish and international artists, performers, actors, musicians and writers taking part in the Festival, while also documenting performances with action sketches. An audience joined Mick in the studio each day to observe and participate, discussing the work in progress with the artist and his sitters. 
-Eugene Downes, Director of Kilkenny Arts Festival

This series of portraits began as part of a project with the Kilkenny Arts Festival and continued to grow as a series of collaborative events between the artist, the subject and the audience. Over the course of the festival Mick O’Dea painted the portraits of numerous public figures associated with the festival including poets Paula Meehan and Paul Muldoon, musicians Denis Cahill and Martin Hayes, seán nós dancer Colin Dunne and actors Simon Callow and Marie Mullen. The psychiatrist Ivor Browne also sat for O’Dea and can be seen in the above image taking a break from the intense sittings, which often lasted up to seven hours. Artist, Richard Gorman who attended as an audience member noted comically, that contradictory to the adage, it was most interesting to watch paint dry! Thus highlighting a curiosity about O’Dea’s painting process as well as the dynamic between the artist, the sitter and those who have come to watch.

In the creation of a portrait painting, a durational dialogue that incorporates both conversation and body language arises between the artist and the sitter. The audience bears witness to the subtleties and nuances that occur in the process of capturing the details that make a convincing portrait – an intensity of eyes, the clasping of hands and the crossing of ankles. Each sitter’s pose differing in myriad ways. O’Dea has long described the process of portrait painting as a reciprocal one that requires a mutual understanding and a certain level of trust where each sees eye to eye – very much in a literal sense, but this dynamic is broadened by the presence of an audience, many of whom are aware of the character of those being painted through their creative output. The process evolves organically as gestures and flourishes appear on the canvas and the audience glimpse aspects of the artist’s methods.

During the first two years the sittings took place in the James Stephens Military Barracks and in the final year of the residency they took place in the only remaining Home Rule Club in the country. Throughout Kilkenny Festival Portraits, O’Dea makes reference to the history of portrait painting and its role as a social signifier to display wealth and prestige. Ireland is a country, which significantly does not have a history of patronage in the same way that other European countries do. O’Dea subtly alludes to this by celebrating the countries literary figures and poets, in a gesture that suggests that the traditions of literature, music and art in this country have a unique history and legacy that is upheld by those depicted in these vibrant portraits.

Achar | Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh | 26.04-26.05.2018

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Achar

Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh

April 26th – May 26th 2018

We again observe the complete preoccupation with paint itself, with the simple play of colours against one another. Many of the recent paintings pulled out from stacks that afternoon in Bray seemed to follow this logic, canvases filled to bursting with dragged daubs of complementary colours: swampy greens and starchy whites, mauves and greys. Within these busy spaces, something like a pattern emerges, aided along by the imperfect repetition of brush strokes — the natural drag of the hand, perhaps, or the physical impact of brush against the canvas skin. Typically, this patterned plane sits within another, bounded in by the sharp border of a second limit point. A border within a border, then, again bringing our attention of the weird leaps of fancy made possible by colour and line. Even within this doubly negated space, space and time appear to happen as though by accident. The eye tracks a line from colour to line, generating a weird rhythm that is something very close to a second kind of, painterly, sight. Incidences like these mean I am constantly surprised when I look and think about painting. Not by the technical skill required to paint, exactly, but the way that skill is communicated through paint. Often, this process — something like the way water tenses with cold, becoming ice — remains indistinct: we are only left to say, this is a good painting, or such and such paints well. Perhaps, then, when we describe someone as a painter’s painter it is exactly this mystery that is being brought centre stage. The point at which paint itself assumes something like autonomy, becoming a conduit for skill. And, when I look at and think about Sinéad Ní Mhaonaigh’s paintings, I have to remind myself of this point: while painting might be a preoccupation of mine, her works prompt me to accept the limits of my own understanding. And probably to fasten me still further to paint’.

Extracted from an essay titled, A Painter’s Painter by Rebecca O’Dwyer

I shall change the way things are ordered | Vanessa Donoso López | 22.03-21.04.2018

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Vanessa Donoso López

I shall change the way things are ordered

March 22nd – April 21st, 2018

Opening reception Thursday March 22nd at 6pm.

‘Initially transcribed in Sumerian on 12 clay tablets, the material link between Gilgamesh and its birthing substance is further compounded in this exhibition. It is also fitting that this most pliable of mediums is paired with a piece of fictive narrative that, having undergone countless translations, exists now as a series of conflicting versions. Donoso López’s interpretations are straightforwardly depictive. In both drawing and sculpture, the characters regard us with uniform expressions; we see Gilgamesh, known to be a cruel king, exert his authority with a brute physicality. We see Utnapishtim and his wife – depicted alongside the animals they ushered onto the ark – who Gilgamesh approaches in his search for the youth restoring flower. The flower itself is portrayed as a simple floral substance without reference to its potential magical attributes.

Concurrent with this literal quality, however, is a marked blend of textual interpretation and embodied experience, the substantive crux of the work being the clay retrieved from the three sites across Spain. Integral to how they function in the gallery is the extended movement through space their making entailed, a repeated transitioning across borders geographical and political. Now directly embodying these locations, the works are rich with incidental detail and haptic content, with close and recurring contact: the viewer’s experience, though primarily ocular, is tangibly charged with the artist’s travels, with each micro-instance of petrichor in the studio as the clay, upon being wettened to be mixed with ink, releases a rain-rich scent’.

-Extracted from On Clay and Transitional Spaces, an essay by Sue Rainsford. On Clay and Transitional Spaces was commissioned on the occasion of I shall change the way things are ordered. 

Full text available here.

Elysian Fields | Paul McKinley | 15.02-16.03.2018

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Elysian Fields

Paul McKinley

February 15th – March 16th 2018

‘Elysian Fields’ refers to an afterlife in Greek mythology, a place where the souls of gods and heroes as well as those associated with them would remain after death. Greece is a country dealing with mass displacement of people from war torn countries and though economically unstable, their contribution to aiding those who have crossed the Aegean Sea merited a nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016, dedicated to all Greek Islanders.

Within this exhibition, Paul McKinley considers modern conceptions of Greece as compared with its ancient history. His paintings feature aspects of Greek landscape; islands, mountains and cliff edges, often informed by compositions within art historical paintings. These landscapes are created from an amalgamation of various places and as such they are not one specific location, but rather an essence of place.

Within Elysian Fields, McKinley’s work charts the present-day representation of Greek landscape while the titles of the paintings subtly refer to parallels between heroes of ancient Greek mythology and the unwritten contemporary epic, fashioned from the plight of individuals in exile.

Primed Vision | Stephanie Deady | 11.01-10.02.2018

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Stephanie Deady

Primed Vision

January 11th – February 10th, 2018

Opening reception January 11th at 6pm.

Stephanie Deady works from photographs, found images and from memory to create paintings of her surroundings, both experienced and recalled. On wooden panels, the paintings depict part of Deady’s studio, the counter top in the kitchen of a friend’s house and the corner of a living room in Italy, among other alcoves. Within these compositions small and precise brush strokes present austere and pared back scenes. To counter this, other paintings present landscapes and interiors, fragmented by gestural brushstrokes. Deady often focuses on one image and through close observation; she presents various iterations of the same space. In this way, subtle changes in the representation of the space become apparent. Minor adjustments to the perspective and horizon allude to a concern and curiosity with how a place is transformed in its representation.

There is a sense of transience and solitude, as traces of figures and furniture appear to populate the compositions momentarily. Three panels show a studio space in differing stages of use. Each presents evidence of artistic activities, though the architecture remains the emphatic focus. Viewed together, the panels become a sequence-an archive of evolving spaces. They are deceptively simple looking and in sequence they move incrementally towards abstraction. Though areas of the compositions often reveal an intense dedication to the depiction of incidental detail within the architecture. Such nuance in the rendering of light fixtures, pipes and skirting boards reveals a preoccupation with precision and an almost ascetic approach to the final touches that complete the paintings.

Deady has a way of imbuing blank spaces, whitewashed walls, ceilings and floors with texture and atmosphere. The paintings contain a kind of warmth that belies their colour palette as well as their, often frugal, composition. Regardless of the objects and figures that may appear fleetingly, there is a reassuring presence within the spaces that provides a constant.

X X V I

The props assist the house
Until the house is built,
And then the props withdraw –
And adequate, erect,
The house supports itself;
Ceasing to recollect
The auger and the carpenter.
Just such a retrospect
Hath the perfect life,
A past of plank and nail,
And slowness, – then the scaffolds drop­ –
Affirming it a soul.

-Emily Dickinson

 

Stephanie Deady (b.1990) Limerick, graduated with a BA Honours in Fine Art specialising in painting from Limerick School of Art & Design in 2014. Her work has been exhibited as part of the Temple Bar Gallery + Studios 6th Annual Book Fair. Her work has also been purchased by the OPW State Art Collection and was selected as part of last years 186th RHA Annual Exhibition. Moving from Dublin, where she spent her time in Jaja’s Studios, Stoneybatter as well as receiving an Artist Summer Studio initiative at DIT Grangegorman, Deady is now based in Callan, Kilkenny having been the recipient of the prestigious Tony O’Malley residency.

the nature of drifting | Ulrich Vogl | 23.11-23.12.2017

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Ulrich Vogl

the nature of drifting

November 23rd – December 23rd, 2017

 

The Map

Land lies in water; it is shadowed green.
Shadows, or are they shallows, at its edges
showing the line of long sea-weeded ledges
where weeds hang to the simple blue from green.
Or does the land lean down to lift the sea from under,
drawing it unperturbed around itself?
Along the fine tan sandy shelf
is the land tugging at the sea from under?

-Elizabeth Bishop (1935)

Ulrich Vogl presents a series of new works across a variety of media. He takes 3D maps as his starting point, playing and working with them he changes their context. In day and night / night and day, the ragged edge of a landmass contrasts with the rigid boundary between one day and the next represented by the international date line. Vogl explores the aesthetic of these mapping techniques to consider the passage of time and various discrepancies that occur in its representation.

For the piece Alpen – half restored, Ulrich Vogl commissioned the conservator for contemporary art in Hamburg and Berlin, Claartje van Haften, to restore a map of the Alps by removing streets, cities and other symbols of civilisation using the same restoration techniques often used to repair damaged paintings. In doing this, he suggests a landmass free from human colonisation. The ‘ready-made’ map gets almost completely over-painted and thus becomes a painting. ‘Back to nature’ in this case actually means leaving many human traces behind. In the process of overlaying the map, manipulating it and altering it gradually through the medium of paint, familiar topographies are subverted.

The fifteen maps in the exhibition will be presented alongside a previous installation by Vogl that has also centered on the issue of land and territory as well as a film by Vogl titled, House West. 

House West / Dokumentation, installation, 2 Min, 2004. Available to watch here.

Hidden dips, Blind summits -The road to Brexitaria | Dermot Seymour | 19.10-18.11.2017

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‘These paintings take the viewer across the dystopian notion of a Brexit on the border’.

-Dermot Seymour

Dermot Seymour, born in Belfast (1956), lives and works in Mayo. Recent solo exhibitions include Fliskmahaigo, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2014), Fish, Flesh & Fowl, Golden Thread, Gallery, Belfast (2011) and at Centre Culturel Irlandais in Paris (2012). Seymour has also exhibited with Solstice Art Centre, Navan (2012), Millennium Court Arts Centre, Portadown, Co. Armagh (2004) and at Westport Arts Festival, The Custom House gallery, Westport (2003). Recent group exhibition include Instant Crush, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2014), The Horse Show,  Kinsale Arts Week, curated by Gemma Tipton and Patrick T.Murphy (2011), In the Mind’s Eye, State Art Collection Touring Exhibition (2009), The Happiest Country in the World, An t-Oireachtais Exhibition, Curated by Cliodhna Shaffrey and Ruairi O’Cuiv (2005) and Art for Amnesty, In the Time of Shaking, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin (2004). Dermot Seymour is an elected member of Aosdana and is the recipient of numerous awards including the Marten Toonder Award (1996) and the Cultural Relations Committee / An Roinn Gnothai Eachtracha award (1994). Seymour’s work is held in numerous public and private collection including the European Central Bank, AXA Insurance, the Office of Public Works, the University of Ulster, the National University of Ireland, Galway and the Arts Council of Ireland.

Obscura | Paul Nugent | 14.09 – 14.10 2017

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‘The works in Obscura consider the role of the camera in diagnosing and treating patients at the Salpêtrière. By referencing techniques in the development of photography, and in his depiction of various angles of the asylum chapel, Nugent considers the relationship between photography and painting to imply a presence or semblance of place associated with historical and institutional environments’

 

Extracted from, Asylum Chapel, a contextual essay by Ingrid Lyons. Full text available here.

 

Paul Nugent lives and works in Dublin. Recent solo exhibitions include NIGHTSHADE, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2015), a solo presentation at VOLTANY, New York (2011), Remembrance Part I & II, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin and Remembrance, Kerava Art Museum, Finland (2009). Selected group exhibitions include Many Worlds, Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris (upcoming Sept, 2017), Golden Record, Galway International Arts Festival, Galway Arts Centre (2017), Trove, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, curated by Dorothy Cross (2015), In Darkness Let Me Dwell, Solstice Arts Centre, Navan (2015), Prelude Speaker, Group show, Castletown House, OPW in partnership with Crawford Art Gallery (2013), Last, Douglas Hyde Gallery, Trinity College Dublin (2011) The Painter, the Draughtsman, the Dealer and their Lovers, Voges Gallery, Frankfurt, Germany (2011) and What Happens Next is a Secret, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, curated by Marguerite O’ Molloy (2010). Nugent was awarded a residency at the Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris in 2005 and he has been the recipient of the Visual Arts Bursary, multi-annual award, The Arts Council/An Chomhairle Ealaíon in 2004-2006 and 2008. His work is held in numerous public and private collections both in Ireland and internationally including the Office of Public Works, the Irish Museum of Modern Art and DCU (Dublin City University).

Written in Water, Shone in Stone, Lost in Light | Richard Proffitt | 10.08 – 09.09 2017

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Written in Water, Shone in Stone, Lost in Light is comprised of work in various media – installation, painting, digital collage and audio, forming a constellation of thoughts and ideas that relate to perception and awareness. Richard Proffitt is interested in the transition between personally significant events and those that express aspects of a collective consciousness. In the written pieces that form part of Proffitt’s practice, he traces a process whereby thoughts and observations become recurring memories, replete with symbols and metaphorical meaning. Within his drawings, the natural world is transformed into a realm of psychedelic journey in which knots in the bark of a tree can take on a peculiar anthropomorphic appearance and mountains from afar can appear as towering deities.

There are numerous references to gateways, portals and paths, inferring a journey – a personal journey perhaps – or one towards expanding consciousness. In his installation particular materials are imbued with a certain power to act as potential talismans, esoteric objects that help to guide the way and to ward off evil. Proffitt’s work seeks out universally relatable symbols, ideas and attitudes which act as unifying forces within society. The audio aspect of the work forms an important part of the exhibition, encompassing elements of psychedelia, folk, drone and ambient music.

Proffitt considers symbols and allegories that cleave to the collective consciousness, he does this by referencing both myth and folk legends as well as their contemporary counterparts such as alien visitation and abduction narratives. This alludes to a phenomenon whereby popular culture is often assimilated and recounted as personal experience and vice-versa. Within Written in Water, Shone in Stone, Lost in Light, Proffitt works across a number of media, drawing on a wide variety of source material to create a body of work that considers the role of esoteric symbols in both personal and universal experience.

Written in Water, Shone in Stone, Lost in Light will be accompanied by a vinyl LP of 7 songsThe vinyl, titled Ending Time, will be available for purchase at the gallery; the limited edition features 180g vinyl, digital download code, poster, 12 page booklet featuring extra artwork alongside texts by Mary O’Halloran and Michael Hill and is limited to 50 copies. The regular edition features 180g vinyl and digital download code.

Richard Proffitt (Born 1985, Liverpool, UK) Lives and works in Dublin. Recent solo exhibitions include Hold The Candle To Your Eye/Light the Criss-Cross On Your Chest, Sirius Arts Centre, Cork (2016), Wild Cries of Ha-Ha, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2015), Eternal Spirit Canyon, The Joinery, Dublin (2013) and Saguaro, part of BAM BAM BAM, Wolstenholme Creative Space, Liverpool, UK (2011). Selected group exhibitions include Golden Record, Galway Arts Centre, Galway (2017), Ritual Play, Verkstad Konsthall, Norrkoping, Sweden (2016), Between Seeing and Blindness, Tactic, Cork (2015) and A Modern Panarion, The Hugh Lane, Dublin (2014). Proffitt has also taken part in art fairs and residencies including CAVE Art Fair, Liverpool, UK (2012) and Mobile Research Station, Skulpturen Park, Berlin, Germany (2009). Proffitt’s work has also been featured in numerous publications including To Seek Where Shadows Are, Edited by Padraic E. Moore and designed by Peter Maybury to coincide with A Modern Panarion, Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane, Dublin.

Atonal Supersound | Kathy Tynan | 06.07 – 05.08 2017

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Kathy Tynan’s eye for idiosyncrasies and her ability to distil an essence from daily encounters lends her paintings a profundity that is interspersed with self-reflexive humour. Each painting captures a moment in which a feeling or mood prevails. In the making of these paintings, Tynan proffers a world in which chance encounters and oddities are elevated through their representation. In recent work, Tynan has referenced her painting practice as part of a routine and within Laughter in the Blood, the artists own studio becomes the focus of analysis. In this painting the artist’s supplies – turpentine, brushes and ink are laid out on a frugal looking table. A bundle of brushes with split hairs peak tentatively over a laptop. On the monitor a talking head, subtitled in French, speaks of introspection in a spell of melancholy shoegazing. To the right of the table, near the skirting board, a scrunched leaf of paper torn from a ring-bound notebook politely beseeches the studio occupants, ‘please don’t unplug’.

In Clarice Lispector’s mystical novel, The passion according to G.H, the protagonist becomes preoccupied with the interior of her own apartment and remains there for the duration of the story. In her rigorous questioning of every aspect of her immediate reality she begins to dissolve its solid materiality into an array of psychical absurdities. While much of Tynan’s paintings follow a similar tact of dissecting the seemingly mundane, she also references the Brazilian writer directly in her painting, Thick and Black Roots of the Stars, in which Lispector’s words appear scrawled across a wall. In the painting, grey skies loom over a church and its grounds but the focal point is the richly embellished wall. Across its cement surface, alongside Lispector’s lines, there are messages to missing family members, initials in bubble font, proclamations of eternal love and witty quips. On this graffitied wall, marks made by many different hands are presented together in the composition.

Such a device harks toward the latent impulse within people to make a mark, to give visual expression to a thought. This concept crops up time and again in Tynan’s paintings, posing questions on the nature of institutionalised art production and on the divide between various forms of artistic expression. In her paintings, which revel in the colour, texture and surface possibilities of paint, Tynan reflects on inconsistency and imbalance. Her paintings are often witty and playful but also inquisitive – imbued with their own revelatory purpose. Together the paintings in Atonal Supersound converse with and often contradict one another. They exist as counter points reaffirming the idea that meaning is both deduced and created. It is somewhere between these two activities that Tynan’s work gathers its momentum.

Kathy Tynan (b.1984) lives and works in Dublin. She graduated from the National College of Art and Design (NCAD) with a BA in Painting in 2008 and an MA also from NCAD (2010). Recent group exhibitions include Hands Laid On with Aileen Murphy, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2016), There Are Little Kingdoms (2016), Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray, What Is And What Might Be, Highlanes Gallery, Drogheda (2015) and The Sky Is All Changed, Hendrons Collider, Dublin (2014). Tynan’s work is held in public collections including the Office of Public Works as well as private collections in Ireland and abroad.

Crooked Orbit | Diana Copperwhite | 01.06 – 01.07 2017

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‘As is well known, the word ‘orbit’ refers to a set route or path around a given point: we on earth orbit the sun, just as the moon orbits us. Perhaps less known, though, is that the word is etymologically coupled with a distinct sense of the optical: from a fourteenth century French word for ‘eye socket’. Seeing, in this understanding, is always underscored by a sense of movement or voyaging: when we look at someone or something, we simultaneously tread a track around it. Perhaps we come close to this object, but we don’t get to touch it.’

Extracted from Awkward Angle of Perception, by Rebecca O’Dwyer. Full text available here.

 

Diana Copperwhite (b. 1969, Ireland) lives and works in Dublin and New York. Recent solo exhibitions include Driven by Distraction, Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin (2016), Depend on the Morning Sun, Thomas Jaeckal Gallery, New York (2016) and A Million and One Things Under the Sun, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2015). Selected group exhibitions include Last Picture Show w/Mary Heilmann, Chris Ofili, Danny Rolph, Vanessa Jackson, Elio Rodriguez, Jill Levine, Rebecca Smith, Thomas Jaeckel Gallery, New York (2017) and Virtú, inc. Picasso, Giacometti, Henry Moore, Elizabeth Magill and Sean Scully at the Hunt Museum, Limerick, Ireland (2017). Copperwhite’s work is held in numerous public and private collections including: the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Arts Council of Ireland, Limerick City Gallery of Art, Office of Public Works, Contemporary Irish Art Society, Highlanes Municipal Art Gallery, Mariehamn Stadbiblioteque, Aland (Finland), Dublin Institute of Technology and The President of Ireland.

Rebecca O’ Dwyer is an Irish art writer, critic, and PhD candidate at National College of Art & Design, Dublin. Her writing has been published in Paper Visual Art Journal, Enclave Review, Frieze, Eyeline, Fallow Media, and the Visual Artists’ New Sheet, amongst others, and she has written catalogue texts for artists including Kathy Tynan, Fergus Feehily and Barbara Knezevic. She is a previous winner of the VAI/DCC Critical Writing Award, and the editor of the online art-writing platform, Response to a Request, which was launched in August 2016.

Rectangle, a written thing | Sonia Sheil | 04.05 – 27.05 2017

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Rectangle, a written thing, 2017, is presented in four ensembles. These painted works conjure theatrical tropes without motion, containing performative moments within the stasis and composition of painting. Such poles of action and inaction, recurring throughout the installation, are echoed in an accompanying script. This written thing provides a space to situate the work in a critical context by exploring its own real and imagined materiality – and it tells the story of an artist who, in being mistaken for a tree, learns what it is to be expressive.

Sonia Shiel’s work examines her protagonists’ attempts to survive the odds of nature and the illusory world around them, through laws of their own making. Many of her works engage with each other symbiotically or con/sequentially within mixed-media installations, creating surreal narrative sequences. Often taking the form of scripted video, audio and live performances, Shiel’s works synthesise object, image and sound in self-reflexive stories of construction, exploring how real things in the world can simultaneously declare themselves fabrications and yet compel a shared make-believe.

Sonia Shiel is currently the Arts and Humanities’ Artist-in-Residence at UCD for 2017 and a recipient of the DLRCoCo and the Arts Council Visual Artist Awards for 2017. In 2014/2015, she completed the Art & Law Fellowship Program at Fordham Law School, the International Studio & Curatorial Program, in New York, and an artist’s residency at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, with Arts Council Project Award support. Recent readings and performances include Temple Bar Gallery and Studios and ArtBox. She has had recent exhibitions at Rua Red, The Crawford Gallery, The Irish Museum of Modern Art, The Lewis Glucksman Gallery and the ISCP, New York, among others. Shiel has been the recipient of the Tony O’Malley and Hennessy Craig Awards, having had solo exhibitions at the Butler Gallery and the RHA Gallery I and II, which included a major publication and a collection of essays. Her work features in many international public and private collections, including the Arts Council, The City of Frankfurt, and the OPW.

Aspasia – An Influential Immigrant | Margaret Corcoran | 23.05 – 22.04 2017

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Aspasia was an influential immigrant to Classical-era Athens. She was the lover of the statesman Pericles and yet famed in her own right as an intellectual. As an outsider to the culture she entered, she thrived despite its restrictive citizenship laws.
Corcoran’s large, highly colourful canvases are bold and assertive, while the works on paper are sensitively rendered and acutely observed. She brings together an unlikely grouping of references celebrating love, creativity, ceremony and independence of thought.

The artist depicts figures such as Aspasia, Eileen Gray and D.H Lawrence alongside Sudanese courting couples and Bhutanese royalty. Their coexistence as subjects in the exhibition traces an idiosyncratic and tangential body of research that incorporates references to colonialism and to a striving for human dignity and equality. Aspasia – An Influential Immigrant celebrates unexpected congruence in the lives of people divided both historically and geographically.
As a complement to the wide-ranging subject matter, Corcoran utilises varying scales, techniques and paints to identify affinities and universal motifs in seemingly disparate lives.

A recent review of the exhibition in Frieze magazine can be read here.

Many-worlds interpretation…| Geraldine O’Neill | 16.02 – 18.03 2017

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 Many-worlds interpretation agus rudaí eile nach iad

 16.02 – 18.03 2017

The subjectivity of perception provides each individual with a measure of the world; the communication of these various measures defines reality. Each one of us is like an artist, continuously creating our own personal worldview often unaware of just how subjective it is. Heraclitus believed that the world was ‘one and many at the same time’; the tension held in this opposition is the tension inherent to life.

-Don Foresta, The many worlds of Art, Science and New Technologies, MIT Press, 1991.

Many-worlds interpretation agus rudaí eile nach iad is an exhibition of recent paintings by Geraldine O’Neill. Drawing on a wide variety of sources, she includes objects from within her household that have personal significance as well as images gleaned from the history of painting. Her emphatic use of children’s drawings, as well as the appearance of children as subjects within her compositions harks to the manner in which they come to terms with their world. Children often conflate playing, learning and dreaming and this is an important reference within the artist’s oeuvre. The content of O’Neill’s paintings constitute a collage through the history of image making as well as the personal history of the artist. These paintings are detailed and dense, replete with allegory and symbolism. Through her fascination with emblematic devices in northern renaissance painting O’Neill recalls motifs and iconography and considers them afresh.

In larger compositions she includes miniatures in the background – scenes unfolding and adding to the narrative of the painting. This device recalls the works of Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch (1450-1515). In his paintings, a multitude of symbols contribute to the narrative. In Minion Man, O’Neill draws on the imagery from The Haywain Triptych by Bosch. On the closed exterior of the triptych, a wayfarer repels a dog with his stick. O’Neill pictures Bosch’s ‘wayfarer’ in a palimpsest of her own painted histories. While the wayfarer journeys forth, a young child looks outward; his eyes glazed in reverie. The appearance of the two figures together conjures ideas of exploration and the pursuit of knowledge through adventure and play. However there are also dangers lurking in the background and challenges ahead. The tension between these two worlds is a defining characteristic of the work and as such renders it both solemn and frivolous. As art historian Angela Griffith has noted in a recent article in Irish Arts Review;

Despite knowing the wider cultural, social and political contexts of the objects and artworks (re)presented, O’Neill does not create polemical works. Rather, through the beguiling visual properties of her paintings she seeks to draw the viewer out by drawing them in – compelling them to look, to see and, ultimately, think.

Within these paintings various realities co-exist creating a palimpsest where many worlds merge. By reproducing and combining images, as well as using different marks and gestures within the language of paint, O’Neill’s work adds a personal voice to an ongoing conversation that spans the history of western art to the present day.

Altered Light | Kathlyn O’Brien | 12.01 – 11.02 2017

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Kathlyn makes detailed and idiosyncratic sculptures from a range of found and collected materials, often repurposing objects, salvaged and procured. Many of the structures appear shrine-like, maquettes that look like reliquaries to house treasured or sacred items. Altered Light presents a series of objects that have been transformed; they have borne metamorphosis through artistic intervention.

Many of these artworks offer us a glimpse into a world of making. They are the physical manifestation of thinking and dreaming through assemblage. Within these sculptures the external world and its structures mingle with the internal world of ideas. The work is buttressed by an instinctual understanding of architecture and carpentry. Kathlyn’s fluency with the handling of materials enables her to think through making and to project dream like structures directly from the inner eye into physical existence – she is a maker who thinks and dreams through the act of making.

Altered Light comprises a number of assemblages that are quiet and unassuming though powerful and resilient. This exhibition is the first solo exhibition of work by Kathlyn since 2011. Her work has often gone under the radar though not for her contemporaries. She has worked confidently over the years, untroubled by the flotsam and jetsam of art world trends. Within these strange objects is a world of ritual and respect that centers on the positive, regenerative aspect of destruction.

This is a particularly exquisite exhibition as the creation of these works span decades. Some works the artist has been developing gradually for years, some have been at stage of completion awaiting a final unknown component and others have been constructed in bursts of enthusiasm for fleeting thoughts. Kathlyn resurrects forgotten items and bestows on them a sense of renewed relevance. She gives them a second life.