Hughie O'Donoghue: Recent Paintings and Selected Works from the American Ireland Fund Donation
This major exhibition of 27 works by the leading British artist Hughie O’Donoghue marks a significant donation to IMMA of 39 works by the artist; the gift of an anonymous American collector, facilitated by the American Ireland Fund. Juxtaposed with seven paintings from the donation, are works from the artist’s own collection and loans from public and private collections revealing more recent developments in his practice.
At the heart of the donation is a series of paintings on the subject of the Passion, commissioned by the American collector and completed over a period of ten years. As with all of O’Donoghue’s work, this involved a period of careful reflection, with the artist travelling to see several collections of religious works, from the great Tintoretto’s paintings in Venice to Barnett Newman’s Stations of the Cross in Washington. The result was 25 large-scale paintings, combining the figurative and the abstract to powerful emotional effect. The IMMA donation includes a further 14 works, in addition to the Passion paintings. The exhibition includes more recent paintings, including the Girl from Stellata, 2004, and Raft, 2005. Often of an epic scale, these paintings demonstrate O’Donoghue’s combination of painting and photographic techniques to produce a multi-layered image in which the photographic elements can dominate the image or be obliterated by over-painting.
Born in Manchester in 1953 and now based in Co Kilkenny, Hughie O’Donoghue has been exhibiting internationally, in solo and group exhibitions, since 1982, gaining a reputation as one of the leading painters of his generation. His paintings are included in important public collections, including the National Gallery, London; the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester; and the Arts Council of England. Recent exhibitions include Lost Histories: Imagined Realities, Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, 2008; Parables, Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, 2008, and The Geometry of Paths, James Hyman Gallery, London, 2008.
A full-colour publication, including an interview with the artist by Seán Kissane, a poem inspired by Blue Crucifixion by Gerard Smyth, Managing Editor of The Irish Times, and a foreword by Enrique Juncosa, Director, IMMA, accompanies the exhibition. The exhibition catalogue is supported by James Hyman Gallery. To buy the catalogue click here
The exhibition is sponsored by PJT Specialist Art Insurance and presented in association with The Irish Times.