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Anne Marie Webb

April 22, 2015
Anne Marie Webb

Anne Marie Webb

Ann Marie Webb graduated in 2014 from the National College of Art and Design in Dublin with an MFA in Painting. She draws inspiration from Baroque theatre and explores identity by obscuring the human figure in a web of abstracted, gestural strokes. Ann Marie received the Peter O’Kane award from the Royal Dublin Society and was shortlisted for the Most Promising Graduate award at the Talbot Gallery, Dublin. She has participated in several group and solo shows across Ireland, including RHA Dublin and RDS Student Awards, and her work is held in private collections in the UK and Europe. 

Anne Marie Webb, Drummer, oil on canvas

Anne Marie Webb, Drummer, oil on canvas

Posted by Robert Armstrong

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Brian Maguire: High Wire Act

March 14, 2015
Brian Maguire, installation Fergus McCaffrey Gallery, NY

Brian Maguire, installation Fergus McCaffrey Gallery, NY

Despite the horrific depictions of body parts, severed heads, statues and perhaps most creepy of all a huge cache of dollar bills, the monumental new paintings in The absence of justice demands this act at the new Fergus McCaffrey Gallery in Chelsea, NY have a strange compelling beauty.

Comparable in scale to Goya’s The Second Of May (1808), Brian Maguire’s paintings tell the story of the contemporary Mexican drug wars around the city of Juárez – the murder capital of the world – where more than 5,000 people have been butchered by drug cartels over the past six years. Maguire has worked regularly in the area painting portraits of victims and trying to find humanity in the wake of continuous tragedy. His documentary film Blood Rising, co-produced by Mark McLoughlin and Brian Maguire, which details the murder of 1400 young women in Juárez and Maguire’s engagement with that situation, is included in the exhibition.

Brian Maguire, Nature Morte (4), 2014

Brian Maguire, Nature Morte (4), 2014

Writing about the film, Ed Vulliamy of The Guardian of London has observed, “Narrators of stories of this kind, if they care, have a fear of exploiting grief as they walk the high wire between narrative and voyeurism.” While the paintings deal directly with images of horror, the effect is not sensational or overtly shocking. Stylistically Maguire is of a generation sympathetic to expressionist gestures, but this work takes its time and disarms with an almost lyrical approach. It uses paint’s ability to render humanity via flesh tones, and in a simple depiction of blue jeans, invites the viewer to connect with the headless victim. In another painting of mangled bodies bathed in a yellow light, the composition suggests an altarpiece, but where the religious icon might be expected, we find instead a container for formaldyhide. The paintings are operating on a high wire, not only as depictions of extraordinary content, but also in the inherent appeal of painting itself, as it operates in Maguire’s work in the realm between the ugly and the beautiful.

Brian Maguire – Police Graduation (Juarez), 2014

Brian Maguire – Police Graduation (Juarez), 2014

Brian Maguire, installation Fergus McCaffrey Gallery, NY

Brian Maguire, installation Fergus McCaffrey Gallery, NY

Brian Maguire, installation Fergus McCaffrey Gallery, NY

Brian Maguire, installation Fergus McCaffrey Gallery, NY

Posted by Robert Armstrong

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Aisling Ní Chlaonadh | John Busher – Transferrals

February 3, 2015

 

Aisling Ní Chlaonadh

Aisling Ní Chlaonadh, ‘Bubbleswatch 2′, acrylic on board, 2014.

aisling transferrals4 (2)

John Busher, 'Sunburn , (9pm), oil on canvas, 2014

John Busher, ‘Sunburn (9pm)’, oil on canvas, 2014

john busher install

 

Aisling Ní Chlaonadh and John Busher, two Art in the Contemporary World students at NCAD recently showed their work in the Project Space at Pallas Projects/Studios. The accompanying text describes: ‘Transferrals is a reference to the unknown, how this is marked with both uneasiness and hesitation. Both practices of John and Aisling share a mutual concern in relation to painting within a contemporary context. This ranges from preoccupations that question the role of photography within contemporary painting discourse, to the exploration of phenomenological interests that inform their practice.’

Aisling Ní Chlaonadh’s website can be found here.

John Busher’s website can be found here.

Posted by Kristina Huxley

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Diana Copperwhite – Shadowlands

December 12, 2014
Diana Copperwhite, Green Portrait, 2014, oil on canvas. 30x25 cms

Diana Copperwhite, Green Portrait, 2014, oil on canvas. 30×25 cms

Shadowland is the title of the exhibition by Diana Copperwhite currently on show at 532 Gallery Thomas Jaeckel in New York.

Writing about her work Colm Toibin says:

Her work is about painting first and foremost; [these] references merely serve a purpose.  Thus digital images, which freeze and fragment an original image fascinate her, but such images in themselves are not enough, they provide a way into the painting.  It is their visuality, which inspires rather than any precise sense of a blurred or fragmented reality.  Because she physically likes making paintings, everything is subservient to what paint will achieve.”

Diana Copperwhite, Atomic, 2014, oil on canvas. 180x175 cms

Diana Copperwhite, Atomic, 2014, oil on canvas. 180×175 cms

Copperwhite makes paintings that move fluidly between representation and abstraction. Photographs, montage and assemblage all aid the process and become ancillary works that pin down fleeting thoughts, glimpses and reactions to a media saturated age.  Her interests and sources are eclectic and wide ranging, from social media to philosophical debate to art historical references.  Yet, as Toibin points out, her paintings are no more about the image than they are about the process of painting itself.  Her work is phenomenological in that momentarily emotional responses override the need to capture reality.  Something has piqued her interest and from that initial interest she thinks in colour, in tone, and texture, in setting herself a visual problem to which there is no single definitive solution.  Her palette is composed of murky undertones punctuated by bright neon rifts. The fluidity and expressiveness of the painting gives little hint of the rigorous and formal abstract principles applied to the making.

Diana Copperwhite, 3  paintings at 352 Gallery Thomas Jaeckel

Diana Copperwhite, 3 paintings at 352 Gallery Thomas Jaeckel

Amelia Stein and Mick O'Dea at the exhibition

Amelia Stein and Mick O’Dea at the exhibition

Diana Copperwhite, Sideways, 2014, oil on canvas, 44x44 cms

Diana Copperwhite, Sideways, 2014, oil on canvas, 44×44 cms

Posted by Robert Armstrong

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Darina Meagher – MFA Graduate, 2014

November 24, 2014

studio 2

Darina Meagher, Hotel Rooms, all Oil on Board, 55cm x 40cm

Darina Meagher, Hotel Rooms, all Oil on Board, 55cm x 40cm

With a practice situated firmly in the realm of realism, I am drawn to the interior space, these receptacles of our inner lives, spaces we occupy both publicly and privately. I have been developing formulae as a way of creating work, each painting is a new space or dimension – somehow the actuality of paint creates an environment which allows something new or unforeseen to come about. The studio becomes a laboratory where the experiments are made in mark and colour; the painted illusion allows an incomplete glimpse of another world, suspended, creating a forum somewhere between the screen and the picture frame.

Searching the internet for: the top ten cities in the world + the top ten hotel rooms in the world I painted the first image that I found. Each room is a repository, which contains us for a moment in time. The rooms themselves contained through paint. Although located all over the world each room looks almost the same, homogenised.

Darina Meagher, Emotion + Place, all Oil on Board, 120cm x 90cm

Darina Meagher, Emotion + Place, all Oil on Board, 120cm x 90cm

Following on, I searched: the top emotions in the world + the top city in the world. Using details of these found images, I explore emotion and place through paint. Challenging myself with every brushstroke and mark, the resulting vigor comes from this engagement both with the medium and the media. Although not fully resolved these works are at the cusp of almost there and mark a shift in my practice.

I am currently based in a studio at the RHA Gallery, Dublin.

studio 1

Posted by Darina Meagher

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Genieve Figgis

October 25, 2014
Genieve Figgis, Lady on a Horse, 2014

Genieve Figgis, Lady on a Horse, 2014

Since completing her studies at NCAD, Dublin in 2012, Genieve Figgis has received a lot of attention. Her steadily growing reputation is boosted by her use of social media, and now the actual paintings are receiving a good critical reception in New York. She made her American debut at Harper’s Books in East Hampton this summer. The show coincided with the publication of her first artist book, Making Love with the Devil, featuring an essay by David Rimanelli – “the figures populating Genieve Figgis’ paintings emanate from some luminescent netherworld, suspended between life and death, or living life and death or life through death in a land of the willingly lost, enchanted and menacing by turns.” Genieve’s current show Good Morning, Midnight at the Half Gallery, NY is reviewed by Roberta Smith in the New York Times (here) -“nastily entertaining pieces of work”, and featured on the blog Art Observed (here).

Genieve Figgis, 
Lady on a Sofa, 
2014, 
Oil on wood
, 48 x 36 inches

Genieve Figgis, 
Lady on a Sofa, 
2014, 
Oil on wood
, 48 x 36 inches

Genieve Figgis, 
Yes Captain, 
2014
, Acrylic on canvas, 
20 x 16 inches

Genieve Figgis, 
Yes Captain, 
2014
, Acrylic on canvas, 
20 x 16 inches

Genieve Figgis, 
Room, 
2014, 
Oil on board, 
18 x 24 inches

Genieve Figgis, 
Room, 
2014, 
Oil on board, 
18 x 24 inches

Genieve Figgis, Man with a Horse, 2014.

Genieve Figgis, Man with a Horse, 2014.

Posted by Robert Armstrong

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Kevin Mooney – Wave

October 24, 2014
Kevin Mooney, Chief, oil.

Kevin Mooney, Chief, oil.

“Wave”, Kevin Mooney’s recent exhibition at Pallas Projects/Studios, Dublin, presented new works that portrayed figures, landscapes and references to Irish history and culture. His second solo exhibition of 2014 expanded on the core concerns of “Dog Island Tales” at the Talbot Gallery earlier this year, and represented a considerable development in his practice in terms of scale and ambition.

These mostly large scale works remain underpinned by an interest in history, cultural migration and mythology. Multiple styles, motifs and abstract patterns fight for supremacy within Mooney’s painting language, where no single reading is possible. His work remains caught between, on one hand, an exploration of oil paint and its processes, and, on the other, images which suggest a darkly humorous imagined world of folk tales and modern day myth.

While the subject matter of the works invites us to contemplate the loss of mystery and magic from contemporary culture, we are also drawn in by the dynamic and often surprising layering of the compositions. There is an engagement with the process and language of painting here. Mooney’s paintings use techniques and motifs which often articulate references to painting’s history, both within and outside the mainstream.

Kevin Mooney website here.

Kevin Mooney, August Man, oil

Kevin Mooney, August Man, oil

Kevin Mooney, Wave, at Pallas Projects/Studios

Kevin Mooney, Wave, at Pallas Projects/Studios

Kevin Mooney, Wave, at Pallas Projects/Studios

Kevin Mooney, Wave, at Pallas Projects/Studios

Posted by Robert Armstrong

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