Tuesday 21 November 2017

Residency at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annamakerrig, Co. Monaghan.

I’m just coming to the end of my week at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre. My residency here has allowed time for finishing some pieces, and beginning some new.  The ability to work for whole days without the possibility of interruption is fantastic.  This proved entirely the case this time as I dropped my phone in the lake on day one, so was without phone contact all the time I was here!  But, as ever, the mix of artists and writers staying here means dinner time is a source of entertainment and stimulation after a day painting and a great chance to socialise.
Annamakerrig Lake, and last photo every from my phone before it fell in.

Studio as I leave it for the night.

Monday 13 November 2017

'That was then, This is now' at Friarsgate, Kilmallock during November 2017.

The 9th November 2017 saw the opening of  Contact Studio's last show for 2017 at Frairsgate, Kilmallock.  It was a really enjoyable event. This is such a sociable space, and Caoimhe from Friarsgate made everyone feel so welcome.

Carl Doran, Chairperson of Contact Studios, gave a quick run through of our time together and reminded us of how different we all are, both in personality and in artistic style,  but also pointed to how we had run a tight ship for the past 19 years.

Here are a few photos I took at the event.

Monday 6 November 2017

Known Unknowns at Limerick City Gallery of Art, Featuring Nuala O'Sullivan, Damien Flood & Daniel Greaney. Curated by Simon Fennessy Corcoran. 3rd November, 2017 to 14th January, 2018

LCGA's Invitation to Known Unknowns
Limerick City Gallery of Art's collection is eighty years old in 2017, and 'Known Unknowns' is a part of the celebration of that fact.  The three artists in the Exhibition, were selected by open submission, and created new works which were inspired by, or are responses to, works in the gallery's collection. 

As a Limerick artist I am very familiar with the collection and a regular visitor to the gallery. The collection is very varied but I have always been drawn to the women represented there above anything else.  Below are images of some of my works in the show, which have been integrated into works from the permanent collection in places.  The work in this exhibition  was curated by Simon Fennessy Corcoran, LCGA's Shinnors Scholar. At the end, I have also included the catalogue notes regarding my work. 

The show runs until the 14th January so call in if your around!

My work on the rear wall, shown with some works from the permanent collection

My work in response to the LCGA's Collection with 'Miss Vera Palmer' by Sir Gerard Kelly at the centre.

Six small paintings and Madonna on exhibition

A selection of works which had an influence on my response, alongside one of my paintings 'V is for...' at top left.

A panoramic view of part of the gallery space.

As a Limerick based artist, Limerick City Gallery of Art and its collection are well known to me, so responding to the collection has given an opportunity to both revisit and reengage with the work.
In my practice I use old family and found imagery that relates to women’s lives and to the aesthetic and culture of the 1950’s. These subjects have strong visual resonances for me and perhaps that explains why I have always been drawn to the women in the collection at LCGA.  I regularly visit ‘Miss Vera Palmer’ by Sir Gerard Kelly when it’s on show, to view her wearing that green velvet dress and pearls as adornment, her eyes forming a cool gaze across the gallery space. In contrast Grace Henry’s  women at the ‘Top of the Hill’, are huddled and chatting with their backs to the cold, and Camille Souter’s ‘Washing by the Canal’ where washing blows in the wind and hints at the domestic lives of women at the time.
My painting response, as with the collection itself, is a somewhat eclectic mix linking both women of the past with women today. If 2017 has shown us anything it is that the continuing inequality and lack of respect, shown to women in particular, continues. The paradox of the ongoing ‘Madonna-whore complex’ seems unending. My work explores some of these paradoxes often using the adornment of women as a metaphor for these contradictions. My paintings show women who often appear in ‘a situation’ which is slightly uneasy and often isolating. Within the work thin layers of paint are used to allow some of the light from the canvas to remain, reminiscent of holding a negative or piece of old celluloid film to the light,  referencing their original photographic source. 

The exhibition was reviewed at RTE Arena - here's the link if you would like to listen