Sunday, July 29, 2012

Cultivating a Sense of Place

Arrived back in the heart of the Burren on Monday last, after a three month search for a suitable studio space in Dublin did not bear fruit! I had envisaged working close to my family home in Malahide since my return from New York, and did, after some time, find a location in Howth which I was really keen on. I had hoped to secure a deal on the place but the landlord wanted to much rent - double what I was willing to pay for the run down house!
Needless to say I was a little distraught, as I had invested a good bit of time and energy into finding a suitable place in Dublin, and had hoped for a positive outcome. But it is amazing how things work out - Now my feeling is that my work will benefit hugely from being out west again. I know I can work well in this place and sense a strong drive building. The house in Howth would have taken up a lot of my time just getting the place ready to work in - but out here I am free, and know I can work here! Already started a new body of work and am going to focus on developing this over the coming months in preparation for my next show in New York in 2013.

The Cottage.

The Studio.

My Neighbour.

Ballyvaughan is the most idyllic village. I love being back here. The peace and quietness of the surrounding landscape coupled with a wonderful community of people makes for a great space to 'cultivate a new sense of place'.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Self Portrait, at the Easel

Self Portrait, at the Easel - oil on canvas - NFS

Detail of brush work from 'Self Portrait at the Easel' below
Full image to follow shortly.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Practicing Silence

Practicing Silence,
Self portrait with Grandmother's mirror and drawing easel - oil/panel - NFS

Friday, July 6, 2012

Self Portrait with Brush and Pictorial Device

Self Portrait with Brush and Pictorial Device - oil on canvas - 24"x18" - NFS

Over the past few weeks I have been interested in returning to the 'self portrait'.
It has been a very inwardly rewarding experience, while at the same time allowing me the freedom to experiment with my growing appreciation for application and gesture.
I have spent time gathering images together of the many self portraits I have created over the years and look forward to share them along with some of the remembered emotions I felt while creating them with you soon.

Self Portraits can convey an emotive power of presence reaching beyond the confines of the canvas. They tell stories of time and timelessness. The methodology inherent in self portraits continues to employ and capture for me, the sublime fleeting moment. My continued method of painting 'from life' frees me from the sobering detachment of mechanical means of recording, and requires me to race and work fast which suits my personality. Hand, Eye, Heart, as David Hockney puts it!

This fluid piece was created in one session, with one brush.
I enjoy in it, the abstractions, paint surface and treatment, which I feel consistently shifts from image to paint, and paint to surface. The brush work is cursive yet powerful - plunging you and me into the realm of immediacy.