We arrived in Ennis on Monday evening and started work straight away. Good to be over in the West, took a drive up the coast and even braved the Atlantic for about 3 mins. Painting these spots is always good. People are amazing, they appreciate what you do as opposed to in most big cities where they stand there and think ‘I could do better’. One more wall to come. Its been hot. So much for our rainy video, my sunburn hurts.
Archive for June, 2011
I’m home in Ireland for 10 days painting a few walls and making another short film with Monsieur Andy Telling. Its a lil different this time, no soldiers or colonial garb. I decided to do a project a little more relevant to what’s going on in Ireland at the moment. For those that aren’t aware, Ireland is balls deep in a recession thanks to the Holy Trinity of Irish corruption – the politicians, bankers and developers.
I’ve always thought that we have a certain cowboy mentality in Ireland, maybe because we’re on the wild west of Europe or maybe because of our strong links to America over the centuries and I think its that cavalier bandit attitude that got us in so much trouble.
So I decided to paint cowboys. It ties in with my usual blurb about masculinity (blah blah blah) but I particularly like this image of the rodeo rider being thrown off his bull. In his 1936 poem ‘The Lost Heifer’, Austin Clarke refers to the Irish struggle for Independence as being like a cow wandering in the rain. So for this set of pieces I like the idea of the bull in all its wild and beastly glory representing the new Ireland while the cowboy represents the politicians who lost control of the country.
A few years ago in the months before Weekend Warriors, my 2nd solo show at Laz, I set myself a task each morning of doing a quick study before getting on with the larger canvases, kinda like stretching before going for a jog. And that’s exactly how the large paintings feel sometimes, like running a marathon, so its nice to bang out a few loose pieces to get myself going. I set my stopwatch (not saying for how long) and get going. It makes me make decisions I wouldn’t normally take, if I fuck up there’s nothing I can do about it.
All the studies are for my upcoming show at Lazarides in February 2012. I did a photoshoot in my studio a few weeks ago involving loadsa props and models so each of these studies will be a glimpse into the shoot before the show (haven’t decided whether I should put up pix of the shoot or not). So anyway, I’ll try and get a Morning Glory pic up everyday, I’m sure the results will be super varied.