Institutional Ghost at the IMMA


The Courtyard Galleries at the IMMA are currently showing an exhibition of work by the Brazilian artist Jac Leirner. The IMMA website tells us that the exhibition

comprises of exciting recent and new work made in response to the architecture of IMMA

and that

Since the mid-1980s, Leirner has collected the temporary and incidental products of everyday life, tapping into what she has described as the ‘infinity of materials’. Stickers, rulers, plastic bags, business cards, cigarette ends and even bank notes make their appearance in her work, removed but not entirely dislocated from their original function.

I saw a work by her during my visit to Tate Modern in JanuaryLevels (2012), a simple work consisting of eight differently coloured spirit levels lined up end to end. A case of “Modern Art? I could have done that” – the answer, of course, being “but you didn’t think of it”. The same points could certainly be made about the Dublin exhibition.

This work displayed at the IMMA is also constructed from spirit levels – 32 of them.


Another spine (2017)

There were also three works made from rules. This one was my favourite


Tools (2017)


I rather liked these simple squares  made from 297 cigarette rolling papers stick directly on to the gallery wall.


Skin (Rizla Liquorice), 2013. Cigarette rolling papers

Attached by their edges they were loose enough to flutter due to the air movement in the room.

This work consists of a long length of electric cable with a plug at one end and an electric light bulb lit by the main current at the other. It’s looped up and down to form a large rectangle on the gallery wall.


Special Light (2017)

This was probably my favourite work, though – Cloud (2017),


which is made from airport luggage tags – the title of the work no doubt referencing their previous use on bags stored in the holds of aircraft.


I thought it was an imaginative use of the used tags to create an effective sculpture.

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