Summer Show June –
Geraldine O’Neill, Jim Sheehy, Sean
Fingleton, Eddie, Joanna and Eamon
Gallery’s Summer Show brings together
a diverse and exciting body of work by
national and international artists.
Sheehy, lecturer at Limerick College of
Art and Design and Director of the Cork
Printmakers Workshop exhibits prints and
etchings of America. These are intimate
monochrome cityscapes full of mystery
that are executed from a bird’s eye perspective.
He also shows etchings of familiar landmark
buildings in New York. The mystery of
the work could be connected with the experimental
nature of the medium. Sheehy himself
says: “I find that the indirect approach
used in printmaking suits me – no matter
how well or skillfully you work – the
final result is always a surprise.” Sheehy
lived in the US for twelve years and studied
at a number of renowned New York institutions.
O’Neill, a Dublin-based artist shows remarkable
fidelity to process and technique through
her still life painting. It is at once,
in the art historical tradition, the humblest
type of painting – mere copying of nature
and yet it goes beyond this to an exploratory
approach of the genre, questioning the
very elements of tradition. O’Neill often
implies the artist’s hand through inclusion
of paint pots, tubes, brushes or some
element of the studio. Also through ‘An
Dreoilin Dreoiteach’ she cleverly represents
a vanitas symbol of a dead bird but this
is thoroughly contemporary presented in
isolation. The vanitas element is no
longer to be deciphered as part of the
still life; instead, it is the still life
surrounded by bright red that also references
Bruun, a Danish artist based in Copenhagen,
produces semi-abstract compositions that
focus on the figure but also reference
myth and symbolism. They have a naive
primitive quality that could be compared
to the work of Basquiat and De Kooning.
He incorporates geometric forms and experiments
with line in the confines of the canvas.
There is a definite sense of layers of
representation in each work. Bruun has
exhibited widely and his work is included
in a number of corporate collections including
Den Danske Bank, Unibank and BRF Kredit.
Fingleton is originally from Donegal and
is now based in Temple Bar Studios, Dublin.
He is an artist in the expressionist tradition
influenced by the work of Kokoscha, Constable
and Turner. His work in this exhibition
is sourced largely from Howth and its
environs. At once his skill and diversity
is evident in his ability to capture both
the calm stillness of the Irish Sea but
also the intense drama and verticality
of a cliff face. His textured approach
to painting with heavy impasto and vibrant
colour displays an intensity rarely matched
in the field of landscape.
O’Kane studied sculpture in Belfast at
the College of Art. Her new work continues
her interest in the flow and movement
of the material. The inspiration for these
pieces is drawn from Hellenistic Sculpture.
The flow of the Nike’s drapery creates
movement and accentuates the semi-transparent
form. The folds gradually multiply, becoming
more variegated and gaining depth as the
material is swept backwards. The figures
have a delicate, graceful, organic quality,
which transforms the traditional approach
to this modern material.
O’Kane studied Fine Art in the College
of Art in Belfast and is a Lecturer in
Letterkenny Institute of Technology.
Although he works primarily in watercolour,
the works in this show are in oil and
acrylic. In “Poppies”, through his composition
and vibrant colour, Eddie achieves a three-dimensionality
and depth. “Irises in the Old Rectory
Window”, in contrast is a subtle intimate
study in oils. His “Sea, Glencolmcille”
shows the restless ocean and cliffs of
southwest Donegal. His work is represented
in various collections including the Office
of Public Works, Royal Apartments Hillsborough
Castle, and Donegal County Council.
O’Kane recently completed a Fulbright
Scholarship at Parson’s School of Art
& Design, New York. The ten small
acrylic paintings on board that are included
in this exhibition are rendered from a
mixture of sources inspired by Franz Kafka’s
book ‘America.’ Kafka never visited the
USA but wrote his text from secondary
source material and so Eamon also plays
with the notion of appearance and reality.
In a similar fashion some of these works
are painted from photographic studies
taken by Eamon while in the States, others
from images in books and the internet.
It is left up to the viewer to decide
on the historical origin of the painted