An afternoon at the IMMA

I was only away from Ireland for a week before I had another trip over the Irish Sea on Sunday. Rather than just spend the day travelling and checking into my hotel I took the fast ferry that left Holyhead just before midday and arrives in Dublin Port by 2 o’clock. That meant I could spend a few hours in Dublin before driving over to Naas. I hadn’t been to the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA) for a while, and there were four new exhibition showing, and it’s always pleasant to walk round the gardens onf the old Military Hospital, especially on a sunny afternoon, so i decided to visit.

I managed to see three of the exhibitions – Propositions showing works by the Brazilian artist Hélio Oiticica (1937–1980), The weakened eye of day, featuring work by the Irish artist Isabel Nolan, and Conversations

a selection of diverse displays from the IMMA Collection

I must write up my thoughts on the Hélio Oiticica and Isabel Nolan exhibitions, both of which I enjoyed, but the following are a few works from Conversations I particularly liked, in most cases by artists I’d not come across before.

This is Objects of Colour 2 (2008) by Guggi (real name Derek Rowen), an avant-garde Irish artist who used to be a member of the goth/post-punk band The Virgin Prunes.

These two abstract landscape paintings are by Barrie Cooke, born in Cheshire in 1931, he spend his childhood in Jamaica and the Bahamas and was educated in America, studying art history at Harvard. He moved to Ireland in 1954 and died earlier this year.
This painting is Two clouds and Knocknarea (2001)
And this large canvas is Lough Arrow (1999)
Both were painted near his home in County Sligo. The IMMA have a large number of works by hom and I think I shall have to find out more about him.
This sculpture, brilliantly displayed, is by Unveiling (1994) by Janine Antoni, who was born in Freeport in the Bahamas, in 1964. It’s a bell, cast in bronze from her own head covered with a veil. Visitors were able to ring the bell, and I saw several people in the gallery caught unawares by the sudden loud noise!
Finally, a lovely little painting Flowers in glasses (1925) by an artist I’ve got to know quite well over the past 12 months or so, Paul Klee

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