Saturday 16 December 2017

Artist comes home to exhibit her new work


Brigid Mcleer
Brigid Mcleer


A DROGHEDA born-artist is returning to her hometown to premier her new work in Ireland at an exhibition in Highlanes Gallery.

Former Greenhills student Brigid Mcleer is originally from Townrath, Ballymakenny, but teached art in Coventry where she commutes from her London home.

Her exhibition One + One was launched on Friday night, and Brigid held a gallery talk and workshop over the weekend.

'I really wanted to show this new work in the Highlanes, as I had heard about it as a very interesting gallery space, and of course being my home town, I wanted to make a connection with the gallery,' says Brigid, who has just become mum to 8month old Stella.

'I have fond memories of it as a church, although I had to make my first open confession here, so that was a bit daunting!'

'One + One' is a video installation, performance, and drawingbased work in three parts.

The artist uses a number of diverse sources as both reference points and inspiration, including Jean Luc Godard's films - Le Mepris (1963) and One + One (1968), from which the exhibition takes its title; and James Joyce's modernist epic novel Ulysses (1922).

'I have some wonderful TY students from my old school helping me here, and you'll see they are putting up words along the stairs,' Brigid points out ahead of the opening.

' They are all the religious references from Ulysses, so you see I have drawn on the religious connection in the gallery.'

Alongside the video-based installation, Brigid exhibits a series of drawings taken from stills of the video footage, which map out the changing relative positions of figures in the images.

These drawings in part play with the narrative connotations of the audience figure, and at the same time explore relationships between the moving image and its freeze frame counterparts.

Professor Steve Dutton, a visual artist based in the UK and Professor of Contemporary Art Practice at the University of Lincoln opened the exhibition on Friday night.

An accompanying publication will be available in early April and will include essays by Dr Christa-maria Lerm Hayes, lecturer in Theoretical and Historical Studies in Visual Art at the University of Ulster, Belfast, and poet, critic and curator Cherry Smyth. The exhibition will run until July.

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