John Farrell’s Irish Artists To Watch
Avid art collector and creative force behind 777, Luna, SMS, Dillingers and The Butcher Grill, John Farrell, shares his hitlist of seven talented artists to watch.
SAMUEL LAuRENCE CUNNANE
This Kerry-born photographer only graduated from IADT in 2011, but has already had a solo exhibition at Dublin’s Douglas Hyde Gallery. He works exclusively with analogue photographic techniques, printing each work by hand in a darkroom. Intimate and melancholy, his small-scale photos capture fleeting moments from day-to-day life.
Dublin-based artist Marcel Vidal often combines painting and sculpture in new and exciting ways – in recent work, for example, small, delicate watercolours are housed within large, exotic-looking black structures. His work is often macabre, but with an underlying sense of humour, and has been exhibited at Rua Red among others.
Though he studied Fine Art Painting at NCAD, Sam Keogh’s multifarious work now centres mainly on sculpture, installation, performance and text-based work. Often hinging upon pop culture, past works have explored Oscar the Grouch, the Bog Bodies, Predator and the murder of Gianni Versace. Born in Wicklow, Keogh is currently based in Amsterdam.
Working with simple materials, Aleana Egan’s restrained sculptures may appear challenging at first, but are full of poetry. Each one articulates an idea or memory, often sparked by literary or historical sources. Born in Dublin, where she still lives and works, Egan’s work can be found in Merrion Square, where a public sculpture is currently installed.
Born in 1989, Hannah Fitz co-founded artist-lead project group Basic Space with fellow NCAD students before going on to scoop Temple Bar Gallery + Studios’ Recent Graduate Residency Award in 2015. Her playful work retains a humble, craft-like aesthetic, often depicting familiar domestic objects.
Working with painting, sculpture and drawing, Eoin McHugh’s work has an eerie, slightly surrealist bent. Past works have seen him cut up antique Persian rugs, collaging them into beautiful and bizarre new creations, or depict the inner ear of John Merrick in bronze. The Dublin-born artist now lives and works in Berlin.
Featured photograph: Ruth Maria Murphy