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Three: An exhibition by three artists from the IMMA Collection

An exhibition of works by three leading artists from the IMMA Collection, Maria Simonds-Gooding, Charles Brady and Callum Innes, opens to the public at the Irish Museum of Modern Art on Wednesday 10 October 2007. Three is the first in a new strand of programming that presents three artists in solo displays from IMMA’s Collection. The exhibition features works across some 30 years from three different generations of artists of varying nationality, juxtaposing works in a variety of media, yet united by a shared sensibility. The intention is to offer an extended experience of each artist’s work and process on its own terms, but with the potential for that experience to be made more meaningful by the proximity of the other two displays. The exhibition will be opened at 6.00pm on Tuesday 9 October by the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Mr Séamus Brennan, TD.

Three reflects the diversity and richness of IMMA’s Collection, presenting a range of work by living artists at various points in their career as well as marking the unique expression of one of Ireland’s most respected painters, the late Charles Brady. The physical frame for the exhibition is the architectural setting of the three adjoining spaces of the Gordon Lambert Galleries. The conceptual frame is the consideration of each artist’s work and process through works in IMMA’s Collection together with works drawn from the artists themselves or other collections. Each space focuses on an individual artist, yet is open enough to allow for a flow of readings and comparisons between each artist with possible, and maybe unexpected parallels, and encounters between works emerging. Installed in this way, the exhibition allows each artists work to be observed over a period of time in an intimate enviroment with a new perspective.

New York-born artist Charles Brady (1926-1997) settled in Ireland in 1959. He is widely recognised as a painter of insignificant, even banal objects, which he treated with monumental grandeur and dignity, combining a spare, almost minimal aesthetic with an open, painterly approach. Everyday objects such as an open matchbox, a bus ticket or an eyedrop box, float in a distorted perspective. Sparely rendered they are imbued with a sense of the mystical. Forced by poverty to paint on small pieces of cardboard, the artist retained this intimacy of scale throughout his life. White Shoe Box, 1987, is typically understated, presented on a modest scale that belies the sense of potential and mystery that it contains. Although his works remained figurative they retain the detachment of abstraction. The display of Brady’s works from IMMA’s Collection is greatly enhanced by the generous loan to IMMA of eight of Brady’s paintings by the National Gallery of Ireland.

Born in India in 1939, Maria Simonds-Gooding has lived in Kerry since 1947. Since the 1970s she has worked principally with plaster and fresco pigment to create highly schematic works which reference man’s relationship with the land. The works in this exhibition range across her career from the 1970s onwards and show a continuation in style which finds its latest expression in her current work, a highly rigourous and aesthetically sophisticated handling of brushed stainless steel and plaster, combining her control of plaster as a material with a love of metal developed over 30 years as an etcher and printmaker. In the work Up The Mountain, 1995, Simonds-Gooding fascination with the landscape is evident. Light is an intrinsic element in all her work in the way it reflects off the materials surfaces and also in the way it renders the shadows of incisions and irregularities as a form of drawing.

Scottish artist Callum Innes was born in 1962. His paintings emerge not only from the application of paint but from its removal with washes of turpentine which results in meditative, highly atmospheric abstract works. Innes approach is critially dependent on time, the crucial moment when the whole surface starts to move and flow as turpentine ‘unpaints’ the canvas rendering veils and streams of disembodied pigment. It is his manipulation of that moment which gives his works their complex character. Each painting is a result of unique but irreversible action, which if unsuccessful is destroyed. Innes works alternately in varying series which he revisits, the paintings in this exhibition are from the Exposed Paintings series. Exposed Painting, Charcoal Grey / Yellow Oxide / Asphalt, 1999, has a quite meditative quality which slows down the viewer’s response and demands a closer, more contemplative look.

The exhibition is curated by Christina Kennedy, Senior Curator: Head of Collections, IMMA.

Lecture: Three Artists in Proximity
On Sunday 14 October at 1.00pm, Christina Kennedy presents a lecture about the work of Maria Simonds-Gooding, Charles Brady and Callum Innes, in the Lecture Room at IMMA. Admission is free but booking is essential on Tel: +353 1 612 9948; Email: talksandlectures@imma.ie

The exhibition is accompanied by an exhibition guide.

Three continues until 17 March 2008. Admission is free.

Opening hours:
Tuesday to Saturday: 10.00am - 5.30pm
except Wednesday: 10.30am - 5.30pm
Sundays, Bank Holidays, 28 – 30 December and 1 January 2008: 12 noon - 5.30pm
Mondays, 24 – 27 and 31 December: Closed

For further information and images please contact Monica Cullinane or Patrice Molloy at Tel: +353 1 612 9900; Email: press@imma.ie

27 September 2007

Irish Museum of Modern Art, Royal Hospital, Kilmainham, Dublin 8, Ireland
Tel: +353-1-6129900, Email:
info@imma.ie