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In Pictures: Exhibition by Rory Draper aimed at ‘Breaking the Bubble’

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Rory Draper's, 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition

Rory Draper's, 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition

One of the paintings in the 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition by Rory Draper.

One of the paintings in the 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition by Rory Draper.

The 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition will remain on view until February 26.

The 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition will remain on view until February 26.

One of the paintings in the 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition by Rory Draper.

One of the paintings in the 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition by Rory Draper.

One of the paintings in the 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition currently on show in the Presentation Arts Centre.

One of the paintings in the 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition currently on show in the Presentation Arts Centre.

One of the paintings by Rory Draper included in his 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition.

One of the paintings by Rory Draper included in his 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition.

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Rory Draper's, 'Breaking the Bubble' exhibition

enniscorthyguardian

AN art exhibition took place in the Presentation Arts Centre in Enniscorthy featuring works inspired by the frustrating bubbles of existence that many people find themselves in.

Breaking the Bubble’, featuring works by artist Rory Draper, was launched by poet and playwright, Stephen James Smith. 

The exhibition ran from Friday to Sunday and was organised in conjunction with First Fortnight, the European mental health festival.

A spokesperson for the centre said the exhibition is the culmination of work by the artist who looked at the small things people do to get them out of the frustrating bubbles they often find themselves in.

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“That insidious bubble of inactivity and isolation and deceptive comfort that can remove you from the people around you," said the spokesperson.

Returning to Ireland from London three years ago after a breakdown, which the artist also feels may have been a breakthrough, he took some time to build himself up again and adjust to a far quieter and slower environment.

"Part of Rory's recovery was being cognisant of what he could do and did do that helped him get through the day,” said the spokesperson. "This prevented him from being bubbled up in his room, removed from others.”

Being aware of those small things and how useful they were, became very useful to the artist during lockdown and it was during that time he started to explore them visually – looking at these tiny, seemingly insignificant acts or moments of appreciation and composing them on a page and emblazoning them in colour.

"The intention is to highlight the seemingly mundane, making these small things bright and shiny, to show that these small actions and appreciations can get you out of a bubble of inactivity and darkness,” said the spokesperson.

In the exhibition, Rory presents a homage to those moments, making them beautiful and striking while also giving an insight to the viewer about how important they are to him.

Speaking about the exhibition and the effect he hopes it will have had on the audience, the artist said: “My hope is that they will come away thinking about the small moments that keep them out of their bubble."

The artist, who is based in Wexford, graduated from Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Dublin, in 2006, before going on to graduate from the National College of Art and Design in 2010.

Having moved to London for a number of years, his return to Ireland coincided with the lead-in to the first Covid-19 lockdown and, during that time, he found solace in creating, in recognition, and in documentation.

Rory has featured on TV in the latest season of Sky’s ‘Portrait Artist of the Year’.

First Fortnight is a charity that challenges mental health prejudice through arts and cultural action. To find out more about the charity log onto firstfortnight.ie.


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