|Showing them the First Fence (1978)|
oil on canvas, 183cm x 183cm
Basil Blackshaw RIJA (b. 1932)
The exhibition is a survey which covers a span of some 125 years. The artwork comes from the very extensive collections of the Allied Irish Banks and the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork. It's been presented in collaboration with the Department of Arts, Heritage and theGaeltacht and the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork. Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. is 99.8% owned by the State. The Crawford Gallery is a public gallery in Cork.
Below you'll see some photos of some of the works. There's a good range of paintings from different periods and styles of painting.
What I liked about the exhibition is that there was a very distinct sense of it having links to the same cultural heritage with which we are all familiar - and yet being quite distinct and having its own unique identity at the same time.
The nearest analogy I can give is the way American Impressionism is very distinctly American as opposed to French.
Here's an example. Paul Henry (1896 - 1958) apparently studied with Whistler in Paris. Whistler's preference for simplifying subjects and focusing on a range of colour tones in one colour field seems to have had a clear impact on Henry's work. However this is very clearly - at least to me - a painting of Ireland.
Henry is an Irish landscape painter who went on to become one of the founders of the Society of Dublin Painters. You can see more of his paintings in the collection of the National Gallery of Ireland.
|Lough Altan, County Donegal (c.1930)|
oil on canvas, 50 x 59cm
Paul Henry RHA RUA
I loved the painting of racehorses by Basil Blackshaw (see top image)! Such a very Irish theme.....
Blackshaw's painting are very often figurative in form, but with a non-naturalistic palate which rebalances the composition in an expressionist, even abstract, way. His themes are very Irish and often rural; greyhounds, Irish Travellers and the landscape.Basil Blackshaw is a member of the Royal Ulster Academy of Arts.
Wikipedia - Basil Blackshaw
|On the Run, War of Independence (1921)|
oil on canvas, 100 x 121cm
Sean Keating PPRHA, HRA
I loved this artwork. It's a photograph of models of fruit and vegetables created out of different coloured toilet paper. Impressive!
|The Luncheon (2002)|
photograph of still life made from wet toilet paper, disposable tableware, bin bag tablecloth, real stalks and plastic flies
100 x 181cm
Caroline McCarthy (b. 1971)
|Paintings by three female artists|
(left) Samoan Scene (c.1923) by Mary Swanzy (1882 - 1978)
(centre) Composition with 3 elements (c1935) by Mainie Jellett (1897 - 1944)
(right) Claddagh Harbour (c.1930) by Lilian Davidson ARHA (1879 - 1954)
|I particularly liked the tapestry in the middle|
|The exhibition also includes some very contemporary work|
|Contemporary art was in the Threadneedle Space - although some was emphatically on traditional Irish themes|
|Emphatic colour punctuation on the feature wall in the Threadneedle Space|
The History of Irish ArtFor those who'd like to read more about the history of Irish Art I commend to you....
- Who's Who of Irish Art
- Best Irish Artists: Painters provides a list ofthe top living Irish painters
- The 10 Key Stages in the History of Irish Art
- Newgrange (3300 BCE)
- Celtic Metalwork and Stone Sculpture (400 BCE - 800 CE)
- Illuminated Manuscripts (c.650-1000)
- High Cross Sculpture (c.750-1150)
- Painting: The Rebirth of Irish Art (1650-1830)
- Irish Artists Emigrate (c.1830-1900)
- The Growth of Indigenous Art (c.1900-40)
- Formation of the Irish Exhibition of Living Art (1943)
- Modern Irish Art (1943-present)
- 21st Century Irish Art
- Irish Sculpture (c.1800-1995)
- 19th Century Irish Sculptors
- Late 19th Century Sculptors
- 20th Century Irish Sculptors
- Plein-Air Painting in Ireland
Regarding our articles on Irish art, we have in addition consulted a wide range of hard-copy reference works, of which the following have been most prominent.I also commend the Crawford Collection's thematic pages to you.
(1) Dictionary of Irish Artists, Vols I and II, Walter Strickland (Dublin & London, 1913).(2) Dictionary of Irish Artists: 20th Century, Theo Snoddy (Dublin, 2006).(3) Ireland's Painters: 1600-1940, Anne Crookshank and the Knight of Glin (Yale University 2002).(4) Irish Art: 1830-1990, Brian Fallon (Belfast, 1994).(5) Irish Art: A Concise History, Bruce Arnold (London, 2002).We would like to take this opportunity of acknowledging the valuable data and scholarship of these works of reference, without which no serious study of Irish fine art is possible.
You can also read a review of the exhibition in The Guardian - Paint the town green: the hidden history of Irish art