An art exhibition of final year art students at WIT.
Title: Six Degree’s of Separation
Artist: Catherine Ashe Doyle
Collaboration: Garter Lane Arts Centre and Visual Art Department in WIT
Viewing: It is essential to book your viewing time as the Gallery has a limit of 6 per session.
Dates: 29th May to July 2nd
Artists have always taken inspiration from nature, but our natural world has been much changed and altered dramatically by mankind’s presence and our addiction to through away consumer objects. In Catherine’s work, she takes inspiration from the excesses and debris of such destruction with the work challenging the lack of effort we make to protect and clean up our beautiful earth.
From discarded tumble dyers to fallen trees and car exhausts, all the materials that she uses are sourced from her immediate landscapes. Something that has also inspired her is the idea of developing a piece of work that celebrates the beauty of nature while simultaneously examining how man-made objects take from that beauty. Therefore, she has tried to combine only these two materials to create her work. These materials are here manipulated by hammering and drilling holes, forging both materials together by force or by bonding with building plaster to create a visually engaging piece. These sculptures are strengthened by the photographic imagery which coinhabits in the exhibition space. Together they are demonstrating how humans act towards our shared world and Catherine refers to this as ‘photographing the ugly truth’ for example, dumping rubbish has become more common, out of sight out of mind, right? Wrong.
In an age where humanity and our choices to sustain our existence are becoming more urgent, Catherine endeavors to facilitate more conversation on the topic by having an audience visually engage with this work.
Laura has been working with an abundance of clothes to make a wearable piece of artwork that will swallow her whole body to highlight wastage of clothing. In today’s society, high-end fashion is being distributed at low-end costs creating an obsession with modern trends resulting in what has come to be known as fast fashion. By being consumed by waste textiles this sculpture comes to life with movement in remote areas where a plethora of textile waste can be found.
Laura first became infatuated with the idea of the waste in fast fashion when the area where she lives became a regular dumpsite for sacks of clothing. This disregard for the fashion industry and environment sparked her interest and through her research found that this is a global issue. Laura created this body of work in order to highlight this waste by allowing her body to become the clothing and packaging. This busy piece combined with slow movements and quiet settings show that the clothing has become a disposable object in today’s society even though the clothing remains where it had been deposited.
It is metaphorical in showing that we live in a time where anything we want is at our fingertips and we lose the value and respect for this increased accessibility.
Lauren began creating this work by investigating astrology and how it has affected her own personality. She started to think of how she could make a 2D image into a 3D sculpture. Lauren first became intrigued with this idea of the breaking down of astrology through her own star sign (Leo) and then went further into the research by looking at how each member of her family’s star sign is associated with her own. By exploring this in greater depth she wanted to analyse connections between close family relationships and to begin to examine her own fears of losing those closest to her through her work.
This work brings the viewer in and gives a visual sense of anxiety through the fragility of the sculptural pieces that sit in a flux between the possibility of falling or even breaking. Lauren has used materials such as thread, wool, mirrors, plaster bandage, wax, concrete, and pigment and has purposefully chosen to embrace a femineity to her handling of these raw materials. Importantly methods of control and lack of it have also become a technique that Lauren has embraced to create these sculptural works.
For many years Emma has played camogie, a female version of hurling, which is an Irish sport. She has acquired many bruises from playing in the goal, and time and time again she would come away from matches and training with new bruises varying in size and severity. But bruises are not just burst blood vessels that caused her pain, instead, they were trophies that came from protecting the goal which only made her work harder. She would always tell the younger goalkeepers to be proud of those bruises as they put your body on the line to help lead your team to victory.
To create these bruises, Emma decided to use a form of action painting, a term now mostly associated with a group of American artists between the 1940s to the early 1960s. Their approach to their painting was to embrace the physical act of painting as a crucial part of their final piece. Art critic, Harold Rosenberg first coined the term ‘action painting’ in his revolutionary article ‘The American Action Painters’, which was published in ART news in December 1952 and referred to artists such as Jackson Pollock, Franz Kline, Arshile Gorky, and Willem de Kooning.
When looking at bruises and the different stages of a bruise, Emma has decided to use the primary colours, red, blue, yellow, and white to create each of the colours in her work. She also uses a gloss medium, clear silicone, PVA glue, and a reduction jelly to create transparency and texture with the paint. And although her work may appear abstract at first, it is not an exact replica of a bruise but rather the idea of a bruise formed through a method of action painting.
Petr’s work is about surreal places, where ordinary rules of our society don’t have any use. These places reflect upon his dreams that sometimes he can control and sometimes cannot. Petr started to have these dreams after watching the Mad Max movie when he was a kid back in the ’80s. He was attracted to how each place is different, but they all have one thing in common; they are about survival when everything seems to be lost.
Petr likes to work with paints, photography, and plaster. He combines materials such as wood, paper, plastic, or metal, which make him scavenge for anything that seems to have some potential. Since the covid pandemic started his remote working place has been in a very small space, so he has had to scale down, and perhaps it’s this new form of isolation that is also reflected in his recent works.
When we have limited resources, that’s when creativity kicks in.
These works are not about any political statement or agenda. It’s quite the opposite and Petr would like to offer to the observer a little space to drift and free the mind of all the entropy that surrounds us every day and take a rest in these makeshift shelters for a while, where time does not matter; where nothing really matters.
James is interested in the breakdown of individuals, places, objects, and ideas as they progress through time and the factors which are instrumental in this breakdown. Work is carried out using fairly standard materials. In this instance cement and salvaged wood. He is attempting to apply a symbolic value to the materials which he utilises. Embracing their physical properties informs him as to how they can complement the idea behind the work.
The students and staff at WIT would like to extend our thanks to the following people without whom this exhibition would not have been possible: Sandra Kelly, Sile Penkert, Suzanne Denieffe, Seamus Dillion, Dr Helen Farrell, Larry Condon, Martin Browne, and The Art Committee at WIT, The National Sculpture Factory, Cork Printmakers, GOMA, and Waterford Arts Office.