Sunday, May 31, 2015

Completing the Circle

Approaching the canvas with a loaded brush. In comfort or with pressure to perform. But always with the truth and acceptance that this is what you should be doing. That there is nothing else to do. You are removed from yourself and the painter is working. Not as a painter making pictures, but as an artist painting paint. 

In conversation with Richard Hearns we discuss the possibilities and challenges of paint. How to build trust, resist doubt, resists outside interference.He knows the paint. The techniques and traditions of oil painting. How to apply it to make a representational image. But in this body of work he wishes to disassociate from the quantifiable and the known. The spiritual quality of the paint take precedence. 

We talk a lot about spirit, how to feed a painting with spirit. How the medium of paint is charged and how we attempt to render, capture and recognise the moment that paint, emotion and skill come together. When the circle is complete and the energy that is spent is balanced and floating in meaningful ratios on the canvas. 

Richard Hearns gives life to a flat surface.   He wills the image into existence without a pre-conceived idea of how it must be.Each approach to the canvas is loaded with emotions. Bundles of emotions all channeled to the tip of his brush.

And then the physical action of painting at this scale. The trained body. Trained by Martial Arts, by exercise. The physical exertion at the moment in front of the canvas. Relying on your training and a profound intent. "Its as if you are in a boxing ring, standing alone in the center of the square canvas. You open your eyes to an opponent and you must use the force of the opponent to defeat it. But there is no opponent - only yourself to counter-weight, parry, and engage".

All thoughts and emotions, spinning in a huge circular chamber, looking for an opening. Like the Large Hadron Collider, which was built to address some of the unsolved questions of Physics, his emotions are running at quantum speed. The artist is a huge emotional machine, a channel. He is working to prove something that can be felt but not fully understood. To create and discover something new and exciting. Essentially he believes that  through the possibilities of paint there is an answer to life's unresolved questions and that through paint something fundamental or god-like can be revealed.


The short Essay above was written during my stay in Barcelona earlier this year by my friend Mark Redden, painter and traditional boat builder. I've known Mark since I was seventeen years old. We met a year before we began college and have reminded close friends eversince.  Mark just opened a show of his works,  at the Museu MarĂ­tim de Barcelona.

This essay 'Completing the Circle' along with a projected documentary HD video piece will accompany 'Crucible', my exhibition of large scale informal abstract paintings at the Burren College of Art. Opening to the public this Thursday at 7PM. The show runs from June 4th to July 4th 2015. Hope you can visit and join me there.

- Richard

Catalogue - oil on linen - 178 x 135cms
Private Collection, Ireland.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Reception for the Prince of Wales at NUI Galway

Some incredible news! My work has been selected to feature alongside works by Anne Madden, Manus Walsh and Mollie Douthit at a reception for Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales at NUI Galway next Friday.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

'Aquarian' as part of Rhyme and Reason at Hazel Mountain Chocolates.

'Illusions are useful only if we use them
To help us get to our true reality.
Initiations and rituals, if they are noble,
Have this power,
(They magnify the secret hour)
They enable us to pass from
The illusion of our lesser selves
To the reality of our greater selves,
Our soaring powers.

An extract from Ben Okri's poem 'Mental Fight'.

Promised to post a high resolution picture of this painting I created recently entitled 'Aquarian'.
This piece features alongside fifteen other original works at my current exhibit 'Rhyme and Reason'.
The show opened on Friday at Hazel Mountain Chocolates to a huge crowd and great interest.
The exhibit run now Monday to Sunday 10Am to 6PM until Friday May 22nd.

Aquarian - oil on canvas - 100x80cms
Private Collection, Ireland

Monday, May 4, 2015

Gin Bottle with cucumber and peppercorns

A strong pictorial narrative no matter how simple is always important. With this piece I worked with warm light and cool shadow areas, large spaces set off against strong use of fine exacting line work.

Hope you like it. - Richard

Gin Bottle with cucumber and peppercorns - oil on canvas panel - 12"x10"
Private Collection, Ireland.
Featuring in my coming solo exhibit 'Rhyme and Reason' at Hazel Mountain Chocolates, Oughtmama, County Clare this Friday May 8th at 7PM.

Friday, May 1, 2015

'Rhyme or Reason'.

This day week marks the opening of 'Rhyme and Reason', a solo exhibition of representational still life paintings created here in my studio in the Burren, County Clare.

Opening the show at Hazel Mountain Chocolates will be Gordon D'Arcy a renowned expert in Irish heritage and wildlife as well as a published writer and Head of Irish Studies at the Burren College of Art.

The Exhibit's launch will take place at 7PM on Friday 8th of May and will be open daily 10AM to 6PM, Monday to Sunday running until Friday 22nd of May.

Below is another very recent piece that I am yet to title. This painting will feature in this exhibit along with some thirteen accompanying works and a selection of fine art archival high fidelity giclee prints.

I'm looking forward to the show now.
Hope you will be able to join me there.

- Richard