The Golden Vein


Joanne Laws: What was the rationale behind your original project proposal, particularly with reference to the ‘Golden Vein’ thematic, outlined in the commission brief?  

Áine McBride: My motivation to respond to the thematic was the potential it offered for an abstracted response. The strip of land of the Golden Vein approaches an ideal(ised) state, offering a framework for conceptual projections around broader notions of land and landscape, place and site. The perceived perfection of this area allows it to be considered … Read the rest

Tactical Magic


There is no better place to experience the transformative and disruptive effects of contemporary art than in Galway during November. Visitors wind their way through streets and alleyways, as TULCA Festival of Visual Arts negotiates its way into every available space in the city. In its seventeenth year, this curator-led festival occupied the city’s repurposed buildings and sparsely available galleries, sometimes operating without any heat while rain fell inside, as well as out.

Having performed ambitious interventions through her own artistic practice, which have earned her a brave and disruptive reputation, … Read the rest

Critique: ‘Over Nature’

Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin
14 November – 21 December 2019

Arriving late to view ‘Over Nature’ at Rathfarnham Castle means settling into a very particular viewing condition – namely one of silence. First encountered in this group show (curated by Valeria Ceregini) is an installation by Shane Finan. In an unrestored dining room, a projector casts landscape video footage onto a faint and skeletal painting that spans two large canvases. The projector is controlled by the viewer through a small touchscreen device, upon which a grid of options appears, displaying geometric symbols. Each of these options is linked to a separate … Read the rest

Nomadic Gallery


Aidan Kelly Murphy: Launched in late 2018, Berlin Opticians is an Irish gallery with a primarily online presence, supported by periodic physical exhibitions. What were the origins of the gallery?

Marysia Wieckiewicz-Carroll: The rationale for Berlin Opticians dates back to 2015 and conversations I had with a number of artists about the need for another commercial gallery in Dublin. There was this group of artists who graduated around 2009 and into a period when everything seemed to collapse; and while there were opportunities to show … Read the rest

Critique: Eoin Mc Hugh ‘Loje, Jelo, Laso’

Kerlin Gallery, Dublin
25 October – 7 December 2019

Speaking on Luke Clancy’s ‘Culture File’ on RTÉ Radio 1,  Eoin Mc Hugh offered ‘Loje, Jelo, Laso’ (Red, Yellow, Blue) as straightforwardly phonetic, like all of the words in Toki Pona, a philosophical language invented – believe it or not – to make things easier to understand.1 McHugh’s titles have previously referenced poetry and psychoanalysis, in an oeuvre rich with allusions to both. Clearly interested in language and how it relates to our perception of art, he complicates things considerably here by choosing titles – our traditional access points – … Read the rest

Critique: ‘Scaffold’

The Bomb Factory Art Foundation, London
23 October – 3 November 2019

You don’t need me to recap the stories – the promise of the internet turned sour – but perhaps it was always heading that way? What began as a research project by the US military, in the heat of the Cold War, has metastasised into an elaborate, sophisticated surveillance network. The mainstream news is littered with reports of data mining, privacy violations, election hacking, and workers’ rights being deleted. Suddenly the internet is everywhere, inescapable and bad for us… 

Over the last decade, the response from artists to … Read the rest

Critique: Camille Souter & Frank Morris

Custom House Studios & Gallery, Westport
19 October – 1 December 2019

Any exhibition featuring Camille Souter’s work is going to have immediate visual impact, and her recent retrospective at the Custom House Studios in Westport was no exception. Curated by her biographer, Garrett Cormican, the exhibition featured 24 works, ranging in date from 1955 to 2015, grouped by decade throughout the ground floor gallery. Several paintings – including When the Mist Comes Down (1964), The Musical Clown at Duffy’s Circus (c. 1966–67), My Father’s Garden (c.1970) and My Father’s Greenhouse (c.1970) – engaged with the concept of memory, and … Read the rest

Critique: Doireann Ní Ghrioghair ‘Declaration of the State Metropolis at Tara’

Pallas Projects/Studios, Dublin
31 October – 16 November 2019

Doireann Ní Ghrioghair’s recent exhibition, ‘Declaration of the State Metropolis at Tara’, presented a series of new sculptures, which reimagine the work of architect Daithí Ó hÁinle, who mapped plans for a new capital city for Ireland at Tara, County Meath, in 1942. Ó hÁinle was a member of Ailtirí na hAiséirghe, a far-right political party formed in the same year, whose stated aims included transforming Ireland into a fascist, one-party Catholic state, where emigration would be criminalised and the speaking of English forbidden. As no actual drawings exist for Ní … Read the rest

IMMA Announce 2020 Programme

The Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA) have announced highlights of its 2020 programme which includes solo exhibitions by Bharti Kher, Christodoulos Panayioutou, Paula Rego and Eva Rothschild; a major international group exhibition Xenogenesis by The Otolith Group and an exhibition from the IMMA Collection Ghosts From the Recent Past. The IMMA Collection: Freud Project will be accompanied by a response by Chantel Joffee to Lucian Freud’s portraits.

The first major exhibition Ghosts From the Recent Past explores how urgencies of the recent past continue to inhabit the present. Framed by key political events over the recent past it focuses … Read the rest

Fiona Harrington Appointed Curator of Headford Lace Project

Headford Lace Project are delighted to announce that Fiona Harrington has been appointed as curator for our international lace exhibition which will be held in Headford in late 2020. They are thrilled to be working with such an internationally renowned artist who has traditional lace making skills at the heart of her practice. We are very excited about Fiona’s vision for the exhibition and the many possibilities offered by this collaboration.

Fiona Harrington said:
“I am excited to be working with the Headford Lace Project in developing this exhibition.
My vision for the show is to provide a platform for … Read the rest