Tag Archives: Visual Art

Alice Maher: Vox Materia

Vox Hybrida Alice Maher 2018.jpg

Pluck Projects are delighted to announce Vox Materia by Alice Maher at the Source Arts Centre, Thurles, Tipperary, opening on the 29th March, 2018.

Vox Materia comprises a multi-part installation of sculpture and works on paper. Stemming from Maher’s consideration of a 12th Century mermaid carving at nearby Kilcooley Abbey, this show meditates on voice and silence. The mermaid is a hybrid creature that transgresses boundaries between human and animal, and is often associated with traumatic loss of voice. Maher deploys the mermaid not as a motif, but as an ambiguous and powerful conceptual tool to explore ideas of language, embodiment, agency, and autonomy. The artist begins by adopting and documenting contorted postures; creating strained silhouettes that gesture towards a language of the body in extremis. Vox Materia exploits the tactile, contingent qualities of wood relief print and watercolour to articulate amoebic, inter-elementary forms while a series of hand-held sculptural forms create new material and corporeal vocabularies.

Alice Maher is one of Ireland’s leading artists who has produced iconic work in film, drawing, sculpture, and installation. Since her first major solo exhibition in the Douglas Hyde Gallery in 1994 and her representation of Ireland at the Sao Paolo Bienniale in the same year, she has held major shows in IMMA, the RHA, The David Nolan Gallery, New York, the Brighton and Hove Museums and Purdy Hicks, London among many others. Her work is held in Irish and international collections including the Neuberger Museum, New York, the Hammond Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MoMA, New York, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, the British Museum, London and the Georges Pompidou Centre, Paris. She is a member of Aosdána.

The exhibition at the Source Arts Centre  will be followed by its installation at the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork later this year. These locations are not only important cultural sites in themselves, but also are significant to the artist. Maher is a Tipperary native; she was born there in 1956 and grew up in a rural part of the county in Kilmoyler, near Bansha. In her 20s Maher enrolled in night classes in what was then the Crawford Municipal College of Art, studying drawing in the upstairs rooms which will host the exhibition of her work later this year. She enrolled full time in the undergraduate course from 1981 until 1985 marking the start of her career as an artist. Therefore, the resonances of this exhibition are not only thematic but also biographical and professional.

Vox Materia runs at the Source Arts Centre until the 5th May, 2018 and will move to the Crawford Art Gallery in September 2018.

The work in this exhibition has been made possible through funding from Tipperary County Council and Creative Ireland Program and was commissioned by Brendan Maher at the Source Arts Centre, Thurles. It is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue which includes essays by the curators and by artist and writer Dr Austin McQuinn.

 

 

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Gaolbreak: Angela Fulcher

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January 28 – February 25, Mon-Fri 09:00 – 17:00.

Preview: January 27, 18.00. Catalogue launch and drinks reception.

In November 1923, prisoners held at Cork City Women’s Gaol launched an escape attempt. Tying together bed sheets to construct a rope ladder, the prisoners descended from the walls of the prison and made their bid for freedom. In Gaolbreak, Cork-based artist Angela Fulcher draws on this history to create a large scale fabric installation in the atrium of Cork City Hall. Knotted lengths of bedding fall from the building’s balconies, obliquely referencing this story of revolt in recognition of Ireland’s Decade of Commemorations. Fulcher brings to bear her fascination with the world of consumer-driven textile design, using contemporary items from low-cost suppliers like Michael Guineys and Penneys. Using sometimes kitsch, heavily patterned material, Fulcher looks beyond the garish to consider prospective connections between everyday devalued materials and their extraordinary potentials.

This project builds on Fulcher’s substantial body of work which has led to growing recognition of her practice. Paying close attention to the details and qualities of materials and surfaces, Fulcher explores the contexts and philosophies associated found materials. Her intelligent and subtle subversions touch on the histories and politics of manufacturing, fashion and obsolescence, the vagaries of taste and the realm of traditional feminine making. Fulcher takes a unique approach to sculpture. Her recent practice has involved creating large-scale, temporary textile sculptures that engage their environment: Sun Stopping at VISUAL, Carlow (2016) reflected on its site, creating striking interventions outside the gallery; Vermiculated Render Quoins to Ground Floor (2016) at the Engage Festival Bandon echoed the patterns on the Allin centre’s walls, translating them into textile sculptures of heavily patterned upholstery fabric and red pleather. Creating surprising, intelligent and witty works of art, Fulcher scrutinizes our everyday environment, picking out derided artefacts in order to consider their implications.

Curated by Pluck Projects

Catalogue with essay by Prof. Jessica Hemmings, Professor of Crafts & Vice-Prefekt of Research at the Academy of Design & Crafts (HDK), University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Funded by Cork City Council. Angela  Fulcher is a recipient of the Next Generation Bursary Award 2016, a special initiative of the Arts Council and the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme, in recognition of the role of artists in the events of 1916.