Wednesday, 25 August 2021

Diana Copperwhite at Rathfarnham Castle

From Aug 14 to Sept 26 an exhibition of recent work by Diana Copperwhite is (or was, depending on when you might be reading this!) at Rathfarnham Castle. After seeing an artist talk (part of a weekly series from Graphic Studio Dublin during lockdown) where Copperwhite presented her art practice, I was curious to see her work in the flesh. As with the other GSD artist talks, recordings can be seen on YouTube (GSD has its own channel); the recording of Diana Copperwhite's presentation can be viewed here. Because of Covid protocols, it is a good idea to ring Rathfarnham Castle in advance to let them know when you wish to see the exhibition. There is easy signage to direct you in viewing the exhibition though there was no one else there when I attended.  Although I could see work near the bay windows of the large Dining Room I followed the floor arrow through the door to the long Saloon where most of Copperwhite's work was displayed. Her work draws the viewer in because of its intense colour. I was surprised to find that the large curtain was not a draping painting, but actually an industrial print of a painting onto a large curtain!

Other than the large drape, most of the work was on paper and exemplary of Copperwhite's signature style. Since I am having an exhibition of my own work at the Castle next spring, I am also checking out how artist's are displaying their work in the rooms. From previous visits I know their is a lovely fireplace being covered up by that false display wall and will specifically not want this wall used in my exhibition. The beauty of Rathfarnham Castle lies in the architecture and history (that door on the right of the picture below is curved to work with the curved wall, there is plasterwork and paintings in situ on the ceiling!).

Although I have only seen Copperwhite's paintings as part of that artist talk a few months ago, I find I prefer these works on paper to those that she showed in the presentation, which were on canvas. 


Using a mix of watercolour and acrylic, Copperwhite is showing more versatility: there are both soft, transparent areas and harder, more solid areas playing off each other providing an interesting tension.

While the  arrows directed me to the Pistol Loop Room, the work there is not Copperwhite's, it is a group exhibition that I will post pictures of next week. I doubled back to the Dining Room and saw the final two pieces beside the bay windows. 

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