Last Friday many of us attended the opening of the inaugural exhibition of the new Wandesford Quay Gallery owned by the Crawford College of Art and Design, which most of you will know as the old Fenton Gallery. Of course it’s sad to see the Fenton go, especially when the arts scene in Cork seems to be suffering so badly these days, but great to know that the space has a new use. The first exhibition was of the work of 3 students who had just completed their MA in Fine Art by Research (Liz Cullinane, Mags Geaney & Roseanne Lynch).
The work of Roseanne Lynch is of particular interest to us as photographers. Roseanne is an artist working with photography. Her work investigates the medium of photography, the photograph as an object, our ways of looking at a photograph and the most basic building block of photography – light. As you enter the gallery you first encounter three very large abstract black & white photographs hanging opposite you. They are of light hitting various planes & have an architectural quality to them, one looks like a skylight, one could be an air duct, but they raise more questions than they answer and as they are all ‘Untitled’, it is possible we will never know for certain exactly what it is that we are looking at.
This uncertainty is a thread running through the exhibition. The next piece we come to is a video. We step into a darkened room to look at the screen, on which we see vertical blinds. At first there is no movement, we wonder if this is another photograph, we are a little confused…but then there is a slight ripple as a breeze flows through the blinds and we realise that there are lots of small movements if we watch closely. I think this is one of my favourite pieces in the exhibition. It is contemplative, it challenges you to rethink the way you look at art & the way you see the world. In her artist statement Roseanne mentions that she is interested in “the possibility of silence & internal conversation when you encounter artworks”. This video provokes both.
Finally you come to a series of smaller photographs printed on metal. Again you are challenged to interact with the art because as you move across the room the pieces change as the light reflects off them. They are photographs of light reflecting off a plane, printed on metal which reflects the light. They really challenge your idea of what a photograph is & how to look at it. Looking at Roseanne lynch’s work is not a passive experience, it is challenging but rewarding.
On a side note (as we are Cork Analogue Photographers) I think it is interesting to note that all the photographs were made on large format 4 x 5 inch negatives before being scanned to be printed.
I would highly recommend a visit to the exhibition before it closes on 1st July 2010, but allow yourself some time to really contemplate & interact with the work, because you will be drawn in. If you can’t make it to the exhibition & would like to see some of Roseanne’s work, she has an excellent website at roseannelynch.com. Although I would say this work has to be seen in person to be truly appreciated.
Exhibition Brochure – MA in Fine Art by Research
Intoducing Magic to the Familiar – a review by Aidan Dunne of the Irish Times
Over the next few months Roseanne’s work can be seen in the following exhibitions:
The Thing That Bruises You in The Back Loft of La Cathedral Studios, Off Thomas St., Dublin from July 2nd-July 11th
Rua Red Summer Show 2011 at Rua Red, South Dublin Arts Centre, Tallaght from 19th July – 21st August
In addition to Miriam’s review, I would like to add a congratulations to Roseanne on completing her MA, and thank her for her years of encouragement, enthusiasm and thoughtful criticism to us at Cork Analogue Photographers. Roseanne is the tutor at the night class in photography in the Crawford College of Art and Design which most of us attended for a year or more. We couldn’t have had a better teacher!