Last Saturday evening we had our little family tree decorating event – listening to loads of xmas tunes, eating treats, and when finished, some relaxing time with chat by the fire and this year’s gorgeous wreath that our friend made for us. Happy Christmas everyone and all the best for 2023!
Thursday 22 December 2022
Wednesday 14 December 2022
It seems like so long ago that I was in Dublin to see an exhibition at The Hugh Lane Gallery, but October wasn't exactly eons! I do like that gallery a lot, but for me it is a bit of a hike to get there, so I don't visit unless something really draws me to it. Regardless, any visit for a specific show always includes a gander at the permanent collection, which is fabulous. And a visit most certainly would be incomplete without peering at the Francis Bacon Studio in situ.
Wednesday 7 December 2022
While going through the multitude of items in the roof portfolios, I came across the poster for my friend Pat Moran’s 1988 exhibition at Temple Bar Gallery & Studios in Dublin (where I held my first solo exhibtion the following year).
Wednesday 30 November 2022
A few weeks ago I remembered having done a drawing of Macha running with horses (something she was forced to do while pregnant and so cursed the men of Ulster to be severely debilitated in time of greatest need) when I lived in Kerry. I was sure the drawing must be in one of the portfolio or flat storage boxes that have been relegated to the attic roof for the past few decades. I was determined to, at the very least, do an inventory of the work in these portfolios while looking for the drawing and perhaps purge a few things on the way. First up was a flat box portfolio that I recall being made to house a submission of drawings to Canada's Artbank in the early 1990s, prior to my big move to Ireland.
Friday 25 November 2022
From Oct 24 to Nov 6, I took part in the Meitheal exhibition at Signal Arts Centre. Meitheal is an Irish term to describe the coming together of neighbours to assist each other, especially with reference to saving crops or helping out with agricultural tasks. In the context of the arts centre it refers to this group show of staff artists, who have a variety of skills and artistic styles, coming together to create a coherent exhibition. Each artist was invited to exhibit a maximum of five pieces.
Wednesday 16 November 2022
Towards the end of the third week of October, I took a two day mokuhanga printmaking workshop at the Clones Art Studios, located in the historic Old Post Office. The building is in "The Diamond" across from the town's central high cross. I had excitedly booked the course as soon as I saw it advertised last August. Kate MacDonagh is an expert in this Japanese woodblock printmaking technique and I have admired her work since coming across it in zoom artist talks over lockdown last year (through both Graphic Studio Dublin and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Arts Office).
Wednesday 9 November 2022
I made an excursion into Dublin's Hugh Lane Gallery before the end of October in order to see the group exhibition “Bones in the Attic”.This was a fabulous exhibition, curated by Victoria Evans, showcasing works by women artists in the permanent collection in feminist dialogue with recent work by invited women artists.
The first piece visible to the viewer (after reading Evans's wall didactic exhibition statement) was what appeared to be a mohair couch. Closer inspection of Sofa, the 1997 artwork by Rita Duffy, showed that in fact the couch was upholstered with hair pins. In this upholstery setting the common, feminine item rendered the couch uncomfortable and combined with the blood colour could only be seen as a threat. Definitely not an invitation to sit and relax...
Wednesday 2 November 2022
Hallowe'en seems to have come around very quickly! Over the past couple of months I realised there was still a few bags of pumpkin mush in the freezer that I needed to use up before creating new mush for the next year of pumpkin pies and pumpkin muffins. Too late I also realised I had never posted pictures or my recipe for pumpkin pie -- I'll try to remember to document the next time I am baking (it is very delicious!). In the meantime, the pumpkins were carved the day before Hallowe'en while listening to spooky music and that meant the biproduct of carving - seeds - needed roasting. In case you are not aware of how delicious these seeds are to snack on, follow the link here for my post from 2016.
These are the two pumpkins that were carved in my house! They'll be turned into mush for the freezer in a couple of days. I gave full details of that process in a post from 2020 here.
Wednesday 26 October 2022
I was so excited a few months ago when a friend told me the Jesse Jones exhibition, “The Tower”, at Rua Red gallery in Tallaght was a continuation of her exhibition “Tremble Tremble”, which had been Ireland’s entry to the Venice Biennale in 2017. While I did not get to see that exhibition in Venice, I did see it a few times when it was shown again in Ireland the following year. I wrote about it here and I also wrote about the "in conversation" evening between Jesse Jones and Olwen Fouéré here.
As in 2018, I was stunned and amazed by Jones’s monumental multi-disciplinary work involving collaborations in film, dance, sculpture and performance. Wow! As I stayed for the duration of several performances I ended up with two “milagros” (hope/healing/spiritual charms), which I cherish.