The Wexford-born fashion designer Richard Malone has started a summer programme as Artist in Residence at the National Gallery of Ireland to create a contemporary response to its current exhibition Giacometti: From Life, with a planned series of free public events.
The exhibition which is running at the gallery until September 4, includes bronze and plaster sculptures, paintings, drawings and prints by the sculptor Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966), dating from his early years in his native Switzerland through to the later work he made in his Paris studio.
Malone, a native of Ardcavan Wexford who is based in London, will be on site in the Millennium Wing Studio directly across from the exhibition space from June 7 to July 31 and the outcome of his residency will be displayed in the studio from August 1 to September 4.
During June and July, the renowned designer and artist will host free drop-in sessions and talks for the public as well as smaller sessions for a wide range of invited groups and individuals, as he works on creating his response.
Visitors will have the opportunity to learn about the project and chat with Malone about his ideas and techniques. He will also give two -talks for which places are limited and must be booked in advance.
The National Gallery is collaborating with a number of community partners during the exhibition including Catherine McAuley National School, the Irish Sign Language Community, community sewing groups from Galway and Roscommon Education and Training Board, the Apollo Project, youth networks and forums and dementia support groups.
Tailored activities and events will take place for these groups during June and July to encourage diverse and inclusive engagement with the exhibition and the artist residency.
The Millennium Wing Studio is wheelchair accessible and the gallery’s education team will be on hand to assist visitors and programme participants.
Malone’s practice includes garment making, drawing, writing, textiles, weaving and performance, often crossing the borders of rigidly define artist outputs
More recently, his work has explored the limitations and possibilities of language and symbolism, as well as the idea of multiple truths existing within one object or identity, including gender, sexuality, motion, sound and personal or collective histories
Malone's work as a fashion and textile designer has won numerous accolades including The International Woolmark Prize, British Fashion Council Fashion Trust and NEWGEN awards, and he has been twice nominated for the LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy) Prize. His work is held in some of the world’s most important collections, including the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) New York, the Victoria and Albert Museum London and the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne.
Last year, he curated an exhibition honouring the legacy of the famous Enniscorthy-born designer and architect Eileen Gray whom he has described as an early inspiration.
Making and Momentum, In Conversation with Eileen Gray opened at the National Museum of Ireland in Collins Barracks after debuting in France and was hosted by Wexford County Council earlier this year.
Giacometti: From Life continues until 4 September. It is co-organised by the National Gallery of Ireland and the Fondation Giacometti.