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Last Chance – Highlanes Open Submission Exhibition closes Saturday 11th July

Delighted to have been selected for the inaugural Highlanes Open Submission Exhibition and very excited to see the exhibition in the real today. An honour to have my painting exhibited in the fine gallery space that is the Highlanes, alongside the line up of selected artists and to have been selected by the panel comprising artist Joy Gerrard, curator Sean Kissane, and gallerist Jerome O Drisceoil. There were over 500 works submitted for this open submission so to be among the 41 selected works is great. Highlanes Gallery re-opened on Wednesday 8th July. So this left just three days to see the exhibition in the real! The exhibition is beautifully curated and showcases the work beautifully. It has been well documented online and there will be a video documentation of the exhibition installed in the gallery released soon.

Last chance to visit the exhibition tomorrow Saturday 11th July.

Highlanes Gallery

Laurence Street, Drogheda

www.highlanes.ie

info@highlanes.ie

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DCC Arts Office – Cruinniú na nÓg – Children’s Art Workshops – Saturday 13th June 2020

 

Cruinniú na nÓg, the national day of free creativity for children and young people up to 18 years old, takes place on Saturday 13th June 2020 from 11am. In response to Covid-19 and social distancing restrictions, it has been transformed into a digital version. This year’s festival is programmed and produced by Dublin City Arts Office and all events will be available for free on Dublin City Arts Office from 11am this Saturday.

On Cruinniú na nÓg, Ray Yeates, City Arts Officer, stated

‘‘Dublin City Council’s programme for Cruinniú na nÓg builds on Creative Ireland’s initiative to show how even in difficult conditions artists and children’s creativity can still make magic”

“At this particular time, it is more important than ever for children and young adults to participate in culture and creativity and this jam-packed programme of free online events provides plenty of opportunities for young people to make, create, write or perform and enjoy, all from their own homes. An unexpected benefit of going online is that the events will have a life after the day and the events will be available as a resource for children on the Arts Office website for the rest of the summer.”

Margarita Cappock, Cruinniú na nÓg Coordinator and Asst. Arts Officer

Dublin City Arts Office is happy to collaborate with the National Gallery of Ireland, Museum of Literature Ireland, The Ark, Axis Ballymun The Five Lamps Arts Festival, Douglas Hyde Gallery and many other artists, musicians and writers.

Cruinniú na nÓg is an initiative of the Creative Ireland Programme at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and is presented in partnership with RTE and the Local Authorities.

I was commissioned to create two visual arts workshops –

If Ever You go Down To Dublin Town – Mixed Media Workshop with artist Claire Halpin

and

Me Myselfie and I – A Portrait Workshop with artist Claire Halpin

Full list of events HERE

 

Highlanes Open Submission 2020 – Shortlisted Artists

Highlanes Gallery Open Submission 2020

The Janet Mullarney Prize (worth €3,000) goes to artist Bernie Masterson for her video work, Flight, with prizes also going to Alasdair Asmussen Doyle for 100ft of Sea, Laura Fitzgerald for A very bad 1:1, Helena Gorey for Untitled, Elaine Grainger for Built Arrangements, and Susan Buttner for Dialogues I sculpt, eventually static, this thing a sort of self , 2020 (homeschooling) #covid19. The full shortlist of artists work selected from over 500 entries are Thomas Brezing, Susan Buttner, Pauline Clancy, Jane Cummins, Amanda Doran, Alasdair Asmussen Doyle, Marta Dyczkowska, Isadora Epstein, Áine Byrne & Bureau Bonanza, Leanne Finnegan, Laura Fitzgerald, Harry Walsh Foreman, Saidhbhín Gibson, Kerry Guinan, Helena Gorey, John Graham, Elaine Grainger, Austin Hearne, Claire Halpin, Méabh Hennelly, Margaret Doyle Hobbs, Bernadette Kiely, Sharon Kelly, Dave Madigan, Bernie Masterson, Sinead Ni Mhaonaigh, Yvette Monahan, Kevin Mooney, Elva Mulchrone, Mark McGreevy, Niamh McGuinne, Astrid Newman, Noël O’Callaghan, Suzy O’Mullane, Kiera O’Toole, Bara Palcik, Emma Roche, Grainne Smith, Padraig Spillane, Jennifer Trouton, Mieke Vanmechelen, Lee Welch and Dianne Whyte.

We are grateful to judges, artist Joy Gerrard, curator Sean Kissane, and gallerist Jerome O Drisceoil. Sincere thanks to our gallery team, and funders Louth County Council and The Arts Council..

An open submission process offers opportunity and challenge, also to the judges, as Joy Gerrard reflects in her response:
It was a great pleasure to see the talent, ambition and breadth of work submitted.
However, the number of works submitted made the task of selecting less than ten percent of the total very difficult. I could have happily selected three or four times this number. It was lovely to hear Seán and Jerome’s responses to the work, and I think as an artist, curator and gallerist trio, we brought very different aesthetic and subjective rationales to the process. I learnt a great deal from looking and considering all the works, and also from my fellow judges.

Jerome O Drisceoil echoes some of the sentiments in his response:
It is true of the list of 517 applicants for this prize that there was work of real originality and depth and lots of colour.  It was a great pleasure for me to discover so much interesting new work among the applicants which might not normally have come to my attention. It was fascinating to see a cross-section of what is being produced in Ireland in the last 2 years and even during the pandemic. I am sure that among these applicants there are names which will become familiar to us in the future. Thank you to Joy Gerrard and to Sean Kissane for their dedication to the task and for sharing their knowledge and ideas.  It was no easy task to reduce the list. There were many more, we all felt, equally deserving of the final nomination.

Highlanes Gallery
Laurence Street, Drogheda

http://www.highlanes.ie/

 

 

 

New Work selected for the inaugural Highlanes Open Submission 2020 at Highlanes Gallery

I am absolutely delighted and honoured to have my work selected for the inaugural Highlanes Open Submission 2020 at the fantastic Highlanes Gallery, Drogheda and online from 9th June 2020. This Open Submission has been developed responding to the social constraints of the current global situation, and acknowledging that many visual artists continue to create and work, though now, many not in their studios, but in smaller spaces, and domestic environments. Its objective is to support and highlight new work by artists living in Ireland, to encourage interest and engagement with contemporary art, and to raise the profile of ambitious visual art in society.

 

My work was selected following a shortlisting by the panel of judges for Highlanes Gallery Open Submission 2020 – artist, Joy Gerrard, Seán Kissane, Curator of Exhibitions at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, and Jerome O’Drisceoil, Gallerist, Green on Red Gallery.

Temporary Morgue - Palacio de Hielo

Temporary Morgue – Palacio de Hielo Ice Rink, Madrid 2020

Egg Tempera on Gesso, 20cm X 25cm, May 2020

Artwork Statement:

As the corona virus pandemic spread and the world went into lockdown, as the numbers of deaths and cases soared, peaked and epicentered – a live stream of images of the “war against the virus” – battlements built in the form of huge hospitals built at high speed in China. But that was all over there. Not here yet. Then across Europe, the abandonment of nursing homes, the re-purposing of buildings for the infected, and the building of temporary mortuaries. And then it was here in Ireland – a temporary morgue to be built at IMMA, Royal Hospital Kilmainham.

I have begun a series documenting some of these sites. Tourist sites, cultural and historical sites, leisure sites – re-purposed as temporary morgues, now commemorative sites or monuments to this pandemic. This is the Palacio di Hielo Ice Rink in Madrid, painted using egg tempera on gesso and in the classical form and style of the frescoes of the palaces of Madrid.

Claire Halpin, June 2020

 

Highlanes Gallery

Laurence Street, Drogheda, Ireland

http://www.highlanes.ie/

Artist Studio at Home in these Strange Times

About four weeks I decided to move my studio to work at home. It was only a matter of time before we went into full lockdown. So it made sense to set up at home. But what would I work on? What would be feasible to work on in the spare bedroom? Both in terms of materials and scale? And that was before I plummeted into the artistic and conceptual crisis of what to paint when the whole world has been thrown into crisis? What is the relevance of my work now that the world is changing beyond all known and recognition? Do I make new work that reflects the crisis? What? As its unfolding? As we are living through it? Is this a pressure to put on myself? But we need art in these times so the town crier is saying!

All of these thoughts swirled around my head as I stood in the middle of my studio three floors up on Talbot Street overlooking the emptying streets, the ghostly Connolly Station. Other than all the boards and canvases that I brought home which I thought if I get these started and finished during the lockdown sure I’ll be ready for a mid career retrospective by the end of May!

I brought home The Annunciation icon of Theotokos that I had begun three years ago with gold leaf water gilded under the guidance of Colette Clarke, my icon tutor. I thought, not in a panic to find religion or spirituality in the impending doom and crisis but that this would be painting. Contemplative painting. Using the simple and ancient materials.

The spare bedroom is bright and quiet. Beautiful light. Surprisingly peaceful. Given my location 10 minutes walk from the city centre. I thought optimistically this new studio space might reflect something of the peaceful monastic space of this stunningly beautiful artwork – another Annunciation – this one by Fra Angelico in the Convent of San Marco in Florence, Italy.

The Annunciation (ca. 1440–1445)[1] is an Early Renaissance fresco in tempera and gold leaf by Fra Angelico in the Convent of San Marco in FlorenceItaly. When Cosimo de’ Medici rebuilt the convent, he commissioned Fra Angelico to decorate the walls with intricate frescos. This included the altarpiece, the inside of the monk’s cells, the friar’s cloister, the chapter house, and inside the corridors; around fifty pieces in total.[2] All of the paintings were done by Angelico himself or under his direct supervision.[3] Out of all of the frescos at the convent, the Annunciation is the most well known in the art world. This painting in particular is supposed to have “achieved heights of singular elegance.”[4] Panels from this altar piece are scattered across the world.

The National Gallery of Ireland has in its collection a small tempera and gold leaf panel – Saints Cosmas and Damian and their Brothers Surviving the Stakes  – a part of the predella (lower register) of Fra Angelico’s most important altarpiece.

Janet Mullarney RIP – A Great Artist, A Great Loss

Very sad to hear of the passing of the amazingly brilliant artist Janet Mullarney.

A great dame of Irish art.

A great loss to the Irish and International art world. 

Strangely and weirdly I was thinking of this artwork earlier this week.

A great image of isolation in these current strange times.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam.

3rd April 2020

 

Artwork: Giotto’s Circle, Janet Mullarney, Highlanes Gallery Drogheda, 2015

Last Chance – Drawing on Don Quixote at Olivier Cornet Gallery until 15th March

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Extended to Sunday 15th March – Drawing on Don Quixote at The Olivier Cornet Gallery – a group exhibition by the artists represented by the gallery and members of its AGA group.

Artists:
Annika Berglund, Aisling Conroy, Hugh Cummins, John Fitzsimons, Jordi Forniés, Conrad Frankel, David Fox, Claire Halpin, Nickie Hayden, Eoin Mac Lochlainn, Miriam McConnon, Sheila Naughton, Yanny Petters, Kelly Ratchford, Vicky Smith and Susanne Wawra.
Examples of art inspiring art down the ages abound but it is particularly obvious with ‘the world’s first modern novel’: Jules Massenet’s ‘Don Quichotte’, like so many other dramatized versions of the story, relates only indirectly to the great novel by Miguel de Cervantes. The opera in five acts was composed to a French libretto by Henri Caïn, itself inspired by ‘Le chevalier de la longue figure’, a play by the poet Jacques Le Lorrain first performed in Paris in 1904.
Massenet’s comédie-héroïque, was first performed on 19 February 1910 at the Opéra de Monte-Carlo (France). The French composer was born in 1842 in Saint-Etienne (Loire), a city where most members of gallerist/curator Olivier Cornet’s immediate family were also born and where he himself completed his secondary education, a determining factor when choosing one of this year’s operas for his artists’ response.
The other appeal was the rich palette of contemporary themes in Cervantes’ novel as well as the art-inspiring-art connections: from Alexandre Dumas’ Three musketeers, through Picasso to more recently Salman Rushdie’s novel. Themes such as the quest for truth and justice in this era of fake news, notoriety and the accession to powerful positions by the underdogs -or perceptions thereof in the current re-emergence of populists-, the explorations of the troubled inner-self, love and how we relate to one another. The resilience of the individual (through desperate acts at times) against our modern-day malevolent giants, to the rallying to just causes and the emergence of the real heroes and heroines, have also provided the Olivier Cornet Gallery artists with a rich tapestry of materials.
This exhibition was first presented at National Opera House, Wexford by Kind invitation of Wexford Festival Opera (18 October to 3 November 2019). It was also shown at VUE Contemporary Art Fair, RHA Dublin (7-10 November 2019).
Tuesday to Friday: 11am to 6pm
(until 8pm on Thursdays).
Saturday & Sunday. 12 noon to 5pm
Closed on Mondays
(or viewing by appointment only)

Reviewed – Drawing on Don Quixote – Olivier Cornet Gallery until 29th February 2020

Gaza May 18, Oil on Gesso, 37cm X 57cm, 2019

Insightful review of Drawing on Don Quixote at Olivier Cornet Gallery by Emma Meehan in Tn2 Magazine.

Read it Here:

First published in 1605, with the second installment appearing in 1610, Miguel de Cervantes’s Don Quixote is widely considered to be the most influential text of the Spanish Golden Age, and an institution in the Western literary canon. Alonso Quixano’s idealistic quest to revive chivalry in an age of moral destitution has been influential for artists throughout the ages, literary and visual alike. From Alexandre Dumas, to Picasso and more recently Salman Rushdie, the enduring resilience of the individual, often through devastating acts, has been a lens by which artists have considered their contemporary environments.

Drawing on Don Quixote, a group show curated by Dublin based gallerist Olivier Cornet, considers this rich thematic palette in regards to the current cultural and political climate. First appearing in the Wexford Opera House in October 2019, then moving on to VUE Art Fair in November, this exhibition is currently on display in Cornet’s Gallery, 3 Great Denmark Street, from 19 January – 29 February.

New work by the gallery’s represented and project artists consider the notion of a quest for truth in an era of “fake news” and re-emerging populism. Aidan Dunne has previously pointed to Cornet’s ability to provoke nuanced responses from exhibited artists without disrupting their individual practices. Indeed, the diversity of fine art practices represented by this exhibition makes for an engaging and surprising visit. Sharp-witted and visually stunning pieces supply commentary on various aspects of the human condition, from Miriam McConnon and Nickie Hayden’s evocations of the feminine mystique through the character of Dulcinea (Quixote’s prostitute-turned-paragon) to Yanny Petter’s botanical monotypes of healing vegetation, mentioned in the text, which question humanity’s contemporary relationship to the environment.

Woodwork pieces by Hugh Cummins contain within fine craftsmanship reflections on the current relevance of chivalric values to our everyday needs whilst Swedish-born Annika Berglund’s stoneware pieces explore the nature of Quixano and Sancho Panza’s relationship, a dynamic which occasions somewhat comic images of our domestic politicians, especially in this fervid General Election.

Claire Halpin’s ambient oil on gesso landscape of Gaza in May 2018 explores the much vexed question of American-Israeli relations. Halpin’s juxtaposition of a chuppah (canopy involved in Jewish wedding ceremonies symbolising the divine security of the institution of marriage) within a barbed wired landscape evokes a sinister view of reemerging populism. 

Irish painter Eoin Mac Lochlainn’s striking watercolour portraits of activists Brother Kevin Crowley and Greta Thunberg places recognisable faces on these themes and seem to assert the power of the individual’s voice in inspiring change.

Olivier Cornet and his artists have managed to avoid cynicism whilst provoking critical thought on the moral reality of our cultural sphere, and humanity’s susceptibility to polarised value systems. I would urge anybody to drop into this space, a short walk from the Hugh Lane, to consider the fluctuation of these perennial themes in our collective imagination.

Emma Meehan

3 February 2020

 

Drawing on Don Quixote continues at Olivier Cornet Gallery until 29th February 2020.

3 Great Denmark Street, Dublin 1
Opening hours at the gallery:
Tuesday to Friday: 11am to 6pm
(until 8pm on Thursdays).
Saturday & Sunday. 12 noon to 5pm
Closed on Mondays (or viewing by appointment only)

Drawing on Don Quixote – Olivier Cornet Gallery – 19th January – 29th February 2020

The Olivier Cornet Gallery is delighted to present Drawing on Don Quixote, a group exhibition by the artists represented by the gallery and members of its AGA group.

Artists:
Annika Berglund, Aisling Conroy, Hugh Cummins, John Fitzsimons, Jordi Forniés, Conrad Frankel, David Fox, Claire Halpin, Nickie Hayden, Eoin Mac Lochlainn, Miriam McConnon, Sheila Naughton, Yanny Petters, Kelly Ratchford, Vicky Smith and Susanne Wawra.
Examples of art inspiring art down the ages abound but it is particularly obvious with ‘the world’s first modern novel’: Jules Massenet’s ‘Don Quichotte’, like so many other dramatized versions of the story, relates only indirectly to the great novel by Miguel de Cervantes. The opera in five acts was composed to a French libretto by Henri Caïn, itself inspired by ‘Le chevalier de la longue figure’, a play by the poet Jacques Le Lorrain first performed in Paris in 1904.
Massenet’s comédie-héroïque, was first performed on 19 February 1910 at the Opéra de Monte-Carlo (France). The French composer was born in 1842 in Saint-Etienne (Loire), a city where most members of gallerist/curator Olivier Cornet’s immediate family were also born and where he himself completed his secondary education, a determining factor when choosing one of this year’s operas for his artists’ response.
The other appeal was the rich palette of contemporary themes in Cervantes’ novel as well as the art-inspiring-art connections: from Alexandre Dumas’ Three musketeers, through Picasso to more recently Salman Rushdie’s novel. Themes such as the quest for truth and justice in this era of fake news, notoriety and the accession to powerful positions by the underdogs -or perceptions thereof in the current re-emergence of populists-, the explorations of the troubled inner-self, love and how we relate to one another. The resilience of the individual (through desperate acts at times) against our modern-day malevolent giants, to the rallying to just causes and the emergence of the real heroes and heroines, have also provided the Olivier Cornet Gallery artists with a rich tapestry of materials.
This exhibition was first presented at National Opera House, Wexford by Kind invitation of Wexford Festival Opera (18 October to 3 November 2019). It was also shown at VUE Contemporary Art Fair, RHA Dublin (7-10 November 2019).  The third edition of this thematic group show includes more works than shown in the other two venues.
Image: Eoin Mac Lochlainn, “Righter of Wrongs No. 3” (detail), watercolour on Arches paper, 57 x 48 cm
Tuesday to Friday: 11am to 6pm
(until 8pm on Thursdays).
Saturday & Sunday. 12 noon to 5pm
Closed on Mondays
(or viewing by appointment only)

Curator’s Tour – Last Chance to see Utopia/ Dystopia at Municipal Gallery, dlr LexIcon

Meet the Curator
Informal exhibition tour and talk
Saturday 25 January, 12-1 pm
Municipal Gallery/ dlr LexIcon, Dún Laoghaire
Curator and director of Highlanes Gallery, Aoife Ruane, curated the Utopia/Dystopia exhibition. In an informal setting Aoife will introduce the exhibition and offer insights into the curatorial work involved.

A utopia is a perfect world. In utopias, there are not problems like war, disease, poverty, oppression, discrimination, inequality etc, while a dystopia, on the other hand, is a world in which nothing is perfect. The problems that plague our world are often even more extreme in dystopias. At this moment in the 21st century and in a complex world of extremes and oppositions what does this mean for artists now…” Aoife Ruane, Highlanes Gallery

Two of my paintings – Seed Vault and Farewell Palmyra are featured in the exhibition which closes on Sunday 26th January.