Oliver Comerford: True Romance

5 - 28 November 2009

Kevin Kavanagh Gallery is delighted to present True Romance, an exhibition of new paintings by Oliver Comerford. The title of the exhibition derives from a 1996 painting by Comerford. In it we see, in the evening light, the outside of an art deco cinema in the West of Ireland, where Tony Scott’s film ‘True Romance’ is showing.

Comerford’s paintings are derived from a vast personal archive of photographs. Each is meticulously selected and highly considered. The varied and specific mood generated by a particular light, weather, time of year or time of day is a central element to each painting. This is balanced by the presence of the physical nature of paint itself and the inventiveness of its application. While he does not share the locations depicted in the works, they are places we know, everywhere/nowhere places. They present psychological space rather than topographical description. Each painting depicts the landscape of remote communities and outposts, viewed from a distance or on the move. Each of these new paintings depicts a building or buildings set in the landscape. They are seen in the distance against the dusk sky, horizon, mountain, road, coniferous woodlands, the edge of town.


Comerford offers us romantic landscape – mediated through photography and film – presenting to us a vernacular sublime, true romance.


Comerford’s work will be exhibited in Terror and Sublime: Art in the Age of Anxiety, Crawford Gallery, Cork, November 20 2009 to February 27 2010 and a mid-career retrospective at the RHA Gallagher Gallery in March 2010.


Oliver Comerford’s solo shows include I Can See Your House From Here, Kevin Kavanagh (2008) ; Night and Day, Kevin Kavanagh (2005); Out Here at Temple Bar Gallery, Dublin (2003); Get Here at Kevin Kavanagh (2002) and Talk To Me at The Living Art Museum in Reykjavík, Iceland (1999). Group shows in which he has participated include 10,000 to 50, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin (2008); Alternative Nature at Cavan County Museum (2008), Tir na nOg at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin (2005), After the Thaw at the Crawford Municipal Art Gallery, Cork (2005) and Eurojet Futures, An Anthology of Emerging Art at the Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin (2005). Comerford’s work is represented in many collections, both public and private in Ireland and abroad including the collections of the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin City Gallery: The Hugh Lane and the Office of Public Works.