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Exhibitions > Past Exhibitions

Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection 2018

11 May - 16 September 2018

Barbara Knezevic pictured in the Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection 2018 exhibition space beside her artwork The Last Thing on Earth (2016). IMMA Collection Acquisition 2018. Photograph by Sasko Lazarov. Courtesy of Photocall Ireland.

IMMA is delighted to present the third year of the Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection with work from artists Barbara Knezevic, Susan MacWilliam, Mary McIntyre and Helen O’Leary, who have been selected for the 2018 Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection. Each of the artists selected have well-established practices, making work of quality and rigour which has received considerable critical acknowledgment and are not yet represented in the IMMA National Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art. From thought-provoking sculptures to a haunting video to a photographic installation, each of the chosen works engages with contemporary culture, reflecting the artist’s looking at and thinking about life today.  The exhibition is now open, and you can find out more about the four works selected for the Collection in the Exhibition Guide. 

In 2016 Hennessy Ireland formed a unique partnership with IMMA to help fund the purchase of important works by Irish and Irish based artists for the National Collection. Works are sought that show excellence and innovation within contemporary art developments, and which represent a signal moment of achievement with the artist’s practice and capture a moment in time of Irish culture. They must also have been made within the previous five years. Artists are nominated by a selection panel and final recommendations are approved by the IMMA Collection & Acquisitions Committee, in line with IMMA’s Collection policy.  

Panellists in 2018 included invited curator Hugh Mulholland (Senior Curator, The MAC, Belfast), Cliodhna Shaffrey (Director, Temple Bar Gallery + Studios, Dublin and IMMA Acquisition Committee member) and Christina Kennedy (Senior Curator, Head of Collections, IMMA), assisted by Claire Walsh (Assistant Curator, Collections, IMMA).

To date, the Hennessy Art Fund has enabled IMMA to purchase the work of twelve artists. In addition to the 2018 selection, works by Kevin Atherton, David Beattie, Rhona Byrne, Mark Garry, Maireád McClean, Dennis McNulty, Ciarán Murphy and Yuri Pattison have joined the Collection through this essential fund.

About the Artists

Barbara Knezevic
Barbara Knezevic lives and works in Dublin, Ireland. She attended the Sydney College of the Arts where she received a Bachelor of Visual Arts and completed her Masters in Fine Art at the National College of Art and Design, Dublin. Recent exhibitions include ‘The Last Thing on Earth’, a solo exhibition at the MAC, Belfast (2016), ‘Exquisite tempo sector’, a solo exhibition at Temple Bar Gallery and Studios (2017), ‘City Agents’, curated by Jussi Koitela, at EKKM, Estonia (2016), and ‘With Leftover Agencies’, Gallery Augusta, Helsinki (2016).  

Susan MacWilliam 
Born in Belfast, Susan MacWilliam represented Northern Ireland at the 53rd Venice Biennale, 2009, with her solo exhibition, REMOTE VIEWING. Her first film, The Last Person (1998) was shortlisted for the Irish Museum of Modern Art’s Glen Dimplex Artists Award in 1999. She was artist in residence on the PS1 International Studio Program, New York in 1999/00, and has had residencies in Ireland, France, Slovenia, Trinidad, the USA and Canada. MacWilliam has exhibited extensively internationally, and has had solo exhibitions in Ireland, the UK, Europe, the USA and Canada. She is represented by CONNERSMITH, Washington, DC. 

Mary McIntyre
Mary McIntyre was born in Northern Ireland where she lives and works. She graduated Master of Fine Art at the University of Ulster in 1990, where she is now a Reader in Fine Art. She has exhibited extensively both nationally and internationally. Solo exhibitions include: An Interior Landscape, Visual, Carlow, (2014); A Contemporary Sublime, The MAC, Belfast (2013); and Silent, Empry, Waiting for the Day, Belfast exposed Gallery (2011). Group exhibitions include: The Untold Want, Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin (2015); Helsinki Photography Biennial, Helsinki (2014); and Imagining Islands: Artist and Escape, The Courtauld Institute, London (2013).

Helen O’Leary
Helen O’ Leary was born in Wexford. She attended NCAD and earned a BFA and MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has been honoured with the la Prix de Rome, American Academy in Rome, John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship; two Pollock-Krasner awards; the Joan Mitchell Award for painting and sculpture; and several grants from the Arts Council of Ireland. Exhibitions include the American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York; The MAC Belfast, Ireland; National Gallery of Art, Limerick; and the Glasgow Museum of Art, Scotland.

Guest Panellists

Hugh Mulholland, Senior Curator at The MAC, Belfast is this year’s invited curator to the selection panel. He was previously Director, the third space gallery, Belfast (2006-2012); Director of Ormeau Baths Gallery, Belfast (1997-2006); and founding Director of Context Gallery Derry, (now CCA) (1992-1997). 

Clíodhna Shaffrey is director of Temple Bar Gallery + Studios, Dublin.  Previous to this she has worked as independent curator and was Visual Arts Advisor to the Arts Council Ireland from 2011 – 2014. Shaffrey sat on this year’s selection panel as a member of the IMMA Acquisitions Committee. 

About Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection

Hennessy Ireland formed a unique partnership with IMMA in 2016 to help fund the purchase of important works by Irish and Ireland based artists for the National Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art. Funding cuts during the recession resulted in the museum lacking resources to purchase works meaning the practices of younger and mid-career artists from 2011 onwards were glaringly absent from the IMMA Collection story. Works are sought which show excellence and innovation within contemporary art developments, and which represent a signal moment of achievement with the artist’s practice. They must also have been made within the previous five years.

Read more about the 2017 selection here>

Read more about the 2016 selection here>

Associated Events

Curators Lunchtime Talk Series | Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection 2018
Wed 27 June, 1.15pm, Meet at main reception

Claire Walshe, Collections, IMMA presents an insightful gallery walk through of the exhibition, Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection 2018, featuring works by artists Barbara Knezevic, Susan MacWilliam, Mary McIntyre and Helen O’Leary.

Artists Discussion / Hennessy Art Fund
Wednesday 12 Sept / 6.30pm / Lecture Room
Christina Kennedy, Head of Collections, IMMA, introduces the most recently acquired works selected for the IMMA Collection and invites artists Barbara Knezevic, Susan MacWilliam and Mary McIntyre to join her in conversation. Please check back for further details and booking.

Join the IMMA Mailing List for IMMA Talks to be the first to know about educational and engaging lectures, talks and seminars. 

Additional Resources

Download the Exhibition Guide (pdf)

Media Release

About Hennessy

Immersed in Irish heritage, Hennessy has evolved to become one of Ireland’s most well-known and cherished brands. Founded in Cognac, France in 1765 by Corkonian Richard Hennessy, the brand’s distinctly Irish heritage has stood the test of time and today draws on over 250 years of knowledge, talent, expertise and passion. It is a brand that is intrinsically linked to the Irish way of life and is complemented by Hennessy’s commitment to Ireland’s unique sociability and skill in creating unforgettable experiences. Hennessy’s Savoir-Faire is evident from its unique heritage, tradition and exceptional craftsmanship which create Hennessy Cognac. Though the Hennessy brand has evolved throughout the years, the true art form of its traditions and methods remains timeless.

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Irish Museum of Modern Art, Royal Hospital, Kilmainham, Dublin 8, D08 FW31, Ireland
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