Secretion

03:58 digital and transferred 16mm film, 2021

Positing a moment of flux where identity and form can undergo a shift is the theme of this short film, incorporating sculptural installation, wearables and performance. The film alludes to an engineered environment in which the subject undergoes a physical and/or imaginative metamorphosis.

Inspired by the self-healing capability of snails and their hermaphroditic character the protagonist collects their mucus to fashion a cape. The much sought after secretion is highly prized for its restorative qualities enabling the snail to repair cracks in its fragile armour and is increasingly being harvested to treat damaged human skin, membrane and tissue. While faith is fundamental to protect its transformative power, the act of hand sewing the protective shell is in itself a form of trial, a test of dedication. Considered abject by some, a desire to become snail-like is to defy sexual categorisation and to acknowledge the importance of self-determination. 

While human to snail transferrals are the subject of fantasy, the energy required as catalyst to make the leap is garnered from Wilhelm Reich’s experiments in the 1950s and the enclosures reference his Orgone Accumulator. Playing with scale, the snails charge the accumulator which transfers this biological energy to its occupant providing the potential for an activated experience.

Please contact me to request links to videos at nmcguinne@gmail.com

Do you think I think so

Episode 16 – Eumaeus
Etching and aquatint
46 x 38cm
Edition 18

2022 marks 100 years since James Joyce’s modernist novel Ulysses was published in its entirety.  To celebrate this, The Graphic Studio Dublin invited 18 visual artists, to each make an original print, responding to one of the 18 episodes in the book under the title Ulysses Imagined

I was immediately drawn to the reference to shelter in this episode; the cab shelter inside which the story unfolds and its counterpart of Eumaeus’ hut. Within this protective space the characters appear to be hiding something from each other, be it their true identity or intentions so I am also thinking of pretence, theatrics and masquerade. 

The exhibition is accompanied by a commissioned text by Nuala O’Connor, set in letterpress.  Celebrated author of Nora. O’Connor’s book, published in 2021, imagines Joyce’s home life, through the eyes of his wife Nora Barnacle. The book was chosen as this year’s read for One Dublin, One Book initiative.

Joyce’s famous novel has inspired many different artists since its publication: writers, musicians and visual artists. This exhibition gives 18 printmakers the opportunity to create a work using an episode from Ulysses as a starting point. The resulting prints, in a wide variety of techniques, illustrate how art of the past inspires art of the future. A line from Nuala O’Connor’s text alludes to that continuum:

‘We loop into infinity, eating ourselves and each other, the end in our beginning and the beginning in our end’

Nuala O’Connor

The exhibition is curated in collaboration with Anne Hodge, National Gallery of Ireland along with Peter Brennan and Mateja Smic of Graphic Studio Gallery.

 

Visual Artists: Kelvin Mann, Andrew Folan, Fiona Kelly, Yoko Akino, Monika Crowley, Tom Phelan, Kitch Doom, Vaida Varnagiene, Robert Russell, Niamh McGuinne, Elke Thonnes, Shane O’Driscoll, Louise Leonard, Jean Bardon, Daniel Lipstein, Matthew Gammon, Dermot Ryan, Clare Henderson.
Text by Nuala O’Connor.  Box set illustration by Eilis Murphy.

Gormworm

Sarah Edmondson, Mary Martin and Niamh McGuinne

19.03 – 16.04.2022
OPENING: 19.04 6-9 pm
OPEN HOURS: SA, SU 4-6 pm


GORMWORM is a three-person exhibition of decidedly unscientific work made in response to lunar and lunisolar calendars. A critique of geo/human-centric time, measurements, and purported experiences.

Hairy on the inside, monoprint on textile


sarah-edmondson.com | instagram.com/sarah_edmondson
marymartinstudio.com | instagram.com/marymartin_

Shell of Secretion

The installation consists of Shell of Mucus, a collection of four costume pieces (Cap of Insight; Mouthpiece of Flux, Mantle of Quietude and Gauntlet of Chance) and a 3:58 minute colour digital film titled Secretion

The hand sewn costume pieces are wearables and comprise screen and transfer printed textile and metal including touch/heat sensitive components, aluminium mesh, acetate and etchings on paper. 

  1. Cap of Insight,  20 x 20 x 50cm, hand-stitched textiles, etching on paper and acetate.
  2. Mouthpiece of Flux, 10 x 18cm, printed textile and aluminium.
  3. Mantle of Quietude, 85 x 90cm, printed textile/film and wire mesh. 
  4. Gauntlet of Chance, 18 x 15cm, hand-stitched Tyvek printed with heat sensitive ink.

Inspired by the self-healing capability of snails, the installation suggests an activated experience in which I present an invitation to participate – either physically or imaginatively.

Lunar Ozone

This interactive/wearable work looks at our interactions with the moon, in particular myth versus fact regarding its influence over our day to day existence. The premise involves harvesting lunar ozone – by charging a receptive foil headpiece at night for wear during the day. It connects with a theory of ambient biological energy, a concept dating from the 1950s and prevalent to this day. 

[Hu]manned Mission

The moon is a distant object, gazed upon by more humans than any other solid object in the universe (Morton, 2019), yet its surface has only been walked on by 12 white American men. The only people to have experienced it first-hand. However, does that make the rest of our knowledge less valid? 

[Hu]Manned Mission is a pseudoscientific exploration into humans’ interactions with the moon. An appraisal of lunar myths and missions, combining fact with fiction to create new narratives. It offers an invitation to reconnect and communicate with your moon, to consider the importance of language in your quest, because … it matters what stories we tell to tell other stories with; it matters what knots knot knots, what thoughts think thoughts, what descriptions describe descriptions, what ties tie ties. It matters what stories make worlds, what worlds make stories (Haraway, 2016).

Lunar Confessions

A series of prints incorporating elements associated with undercover investigation; an anonymity of monochromatic silhouettes accompanied with dramatic/implausible testimonials are presented alongside a moon-pod and wearable moon-hat to encourage audience involvement with the objective to collect observations, confessions and elicit an imaginative response.

These observations/comments will be recorded in person by the research team.

Surreal Estate

Surreal Estate installation
Graphic Studio Gallery: May 2013
Thermal transfer screen print on constructed aluminium boxes containing interiors with etchings/screen prints/monoprints.
11 Digital Archival pigment prints
3 minute animated film.

Surreal Estate
Surreal Estate has grown out of my interest in shadows, reflections and windows. Working in a beautiful old studio surrounded by a variety of old and disused windows, obsolete vitrines and historic picture glass, I was particularly drawn to how the inherent distortions formed in glass during manufacture and the subsequent creep of ageing can influence how and what we see. Such idiosyncratic textures together with additional visual patterns of rain, dust and oil provide a unique impression; a distorted reality. This in turn led me to look closer at patterned and decorative glass, nets, curtains and blinds, all of which control or alter what we allow of our private life to be seen and how we view our surroundings. The installation comprises three elements Surrealight, 35 print and sculptural constructions, Surrealshadow, a set of digital prints and Shadowlight, a 3min animated film.

Surrealight represents an uninhabited urban area akin to the many historic, deserted Irish villages and current ghost estates albeit with an independent imaginary life of its own; one that we are not invited to share. Nevertheless, we are pulled in by our curiosity and by the desire to make sense of what we can see. A dirty window obscured by torn curtains suggests neglect or eccentricity but this is entirely presumed. We do not know what is behind the glass; whether or not there is an occupant. We live with so much around us that we consider important yet often an abandoned room will contain vestiges of their inhabitants who have since moved on. This becomes part of the history or life of the rooms. A new occupant may change it all but time will ensure that the cycle of dereliction and regeneration continues. These questions have morphed into a fascination with how perception can be distorted. How do we perceive these spaces – do they remind us of our past or do they make us think about where we are and of our own place in time?

Surrealshadow

The digital prints which make up Surrealshadow represent views of the fabricated interiors and exteriors of Surrealight. The patterns of curtains and glass, the interplay of light and shadow and the image of windows all are shown in stasis and as such appear stage-like and inanimate in comparison. It interests me how differently these spaces are perceived and how our emotional response is altered.

Shadowlight

In Shadowlight themes of watching and being watched are presented to the spectator through a non-narrative sequence which hints at the private ethereal existence of spaces independent of us. How does the feeling or knowledge of being watched distort how we behave? Light and shadow play, pattern and effects on glass create an additional visual plane for the viewer sometimes at harmony with the images in the shots and at other times in conflict. The intent is to blur the lines between apparent reality and created fantasy, to look further into what appears straightforward at first glance.

Surrealshadow

11 Digital Archival pigment prints
Surreal Estate: Graphic Studio Gallery: May 2013

The digital prints which make up Surrealshadow represent views of the fabricated interiors and exteriors of Surrealight. The patterns of curtains and glass, the interplay of light and shadow and the image of windows all are shown in stasis and as such appear stage-like and inanimate in comparison. It interests me how differently these spaces are perceived and how our emotional response is altered.