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Published on May 1st, 2016 | by Aidan Kelly Murphy

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Picture This: Your National Visual Arts Guide – Bank Holiday Weekend

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Paul Seawright – News Operations III

Ah the summer. Will it come? Shall we be teased again for another few months? This weekend’s Bank Holiday is scheduled to be a washout around the country. Needless to say we here at The Thin Air strongly hope this prediction is wrong, but if not there are plenty of exhibitions happening around the country to keep you entertained – and dry! Community, environment and reflection form common themes across the exhibitions highlighted in this edition of Picture This. Environment, in both the natural sense and as a habitat, from the structure of Neomorph in Cork and Post: Colony in Carlow. Community is also a major factor in the former and Ireland’s diverse art community is on show in the RHA Annual Exhibition in Dublin. Reflection on past history and spaces flows through these three shows and is key to the work on display in Belfast by Paul Seawright – Things Left Unsaid. Fingers crossed we get the weather, and even if we don’t, Ireland’s galleries continue to play host to exciting and diverse works by a multitude of artists. Words by Aidan Kelly Murphy

Dublin: “The show represents Ireland’s largest and most diverse collection of artists across a variety of mediums.”

Picture2Janet Mullarney ARHA Speed

What: RHA Annual Exhibition
Where: RHA Gallery
When: 22nd March to 11th June

The 1916 Rising, as it did in Dublin and Ireland as a whole, had a major impact on the history and structure of the RHA. The gallery’s original home on Lower Abbey Street was destroyed by fire on April 27th 1916. To mark this the 186th edition of the RHA Annual Exhibition was moved, from its traditional summer run, to March – June in order to tie into the centenary of this inauspicious anniversary. The show represents Ireland’s largest and most diverse collection of artists from across a variety of mediums including painting, photography, sculpture and, drawing. On display are works ranging from established names to key emerging artists. As well as the several hundred artworks on show, the gallery has just launched three publications of works from recent exhibitions by artists Amanda Coogan, Mark Garry and David Farrell. The beauty of the RHA Annual is that is always sparks a dialogue, introduces you to artists you may otherwise miss and collate together multiple disciplines in a way that no other show in Ireland can.

Full details on the show are available here.

picture3Martin Healy – Terrain (III)

Belfast: “While the setting may be thousands of miles away, the message reverberates strongly in Northern Ireland.”

picture4Paul Seawright – Cables

What: Things Left Unsaid
Where: Ulster Museum
When: 18th September to 15th May

Closing mid-May after after an extensive run at Ulster Museum in Belfast is Paul Seawright’s Things Left Unsaid. The show, originally completed in 2014, is a comment on American newsrooms and specifically the edited reporting of armed conflicts – in this case the war in Iraq. These spaces are elevated to theatrical stages as the collation, and ultimately selective filtering, of information shapes the delivery and interpretation of news by news outlets and audience respectfully. While the setting may be thousands of miles away, the message reverberates strongly in Northern Ireland via our own recent; and continuous, dealings with armed conflicts and media interpretations of them. Closing on May 14th, be sure to visit this engaging exhibition before it’s gone.

Full details on the show are available here.

picture5Paul Seawright – Void

Carlow: “In this the year of reassessing cultural identities this comment on the position of an invading force of nature resonates loudly.”

picture6Gareth Kennedy – Post Colony, film still, 2015

What: Post Colony
Where: Visual Carlow
When: 18th January to 19th June

While views of the Irish countryside that are a hazy mix of green and purple with smatterings of Rhododendron x superponticum clusters may evoke nostalgic memories reminiscent of John Hinde’s postcards, a more appropriate word would be littered. A non-native species, regarded by some as a weed, was first introduced to Ireland in the 1700’s and has taken hold in many places including the Killarney National Park. This juxtaposition of cultural heritage and unwanted pest in Killarney is subject of Gareth Kennedys latest exhibition entitled: Post Colony. In this Kennedy documents the transformation of the area from the Munster Plantation through to modern day tourist attraction. In this the year of reassessing cultural identities this comment on the position of an invading force of nature resonates loudly in Visual Carlow’s show.

Full details on the show are available here.

Picture7Gareth Kennedy – Post Colony, film still, 2015

Cork: “Neomorph is a show that can be enjoyed by the people of West Cork and further afield.

Picture8Tomas Madajczak – I Wish You Were Me For A While

What: Neomorph
Where: Uillinn: West Cork Arts Centre
When: 30th April to 21st May

Uillinn, the new West Cork Arts Centre which opened in 2015, plays both the role of host and inspiration for the latest show by Polish-born and Irish-based artist Tomasz Madajczak. Madajczak was invited to create a body of work in response Uillinn itself in both its physical relationship with the town Skibbereen and the dialogue the space creates with the public. The end result, after a 4-month residency at the tail end of last year, is the mixed media show Neomorph. Often exhibitions can feel detached from the audience they are created for, be it through lack of engagement or a misinterpretation of brief: Madajczak, through his direct engagement with the locality, ensures that this is not the case and as a result Neomorph is a show that can be enjoyed by the people of West Cork and further afield.

Full details on the show are available here.

Picture9Tomas Madajczak – New Perspective

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About the Author

is the Arts Editor for The Thin Air. He's also a coffee fiend, architecture enthusiast and general messer.



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