Wednesday, October 26, 2022 @ 19:30 – 20:30
Mike and John were involved in several community arts projects in Westport in the 1980s which lead to the establishment of the Customs House Gallery and Studios of which they were founding members. They then went on to pursue their own successful careers in the visual arts and, having previously exhibited together in 1996 and in 2002, are pleased to come together again as part of this year’s Westival programme
Mike Bernard’s paintings in this exhibition span a lifetime of work; They derive their inspiration from the rural environment in all its contexts and particularly from the natural world which surrounds him at his home in Cloona. ‘Working in a studio surrounded by mountains, woodlands, meadows and water, the sky becomes a clock counting out the year; spring is the colour change over Black Hill, moving through the neon lights of summer and back into the grim magnificence of autumn’
‘Painting is what happens when words don’t do it for you; it has its own language of emotions, reactions; not just a decoration but a demand to be seen and then to absorb you.’
John Brady’s paintings are the responses to sketches done nearly ten years ago when he spent 14 months travelling the world. The modern day ‘Grand Tour’ went through over 20 countries and he filled around 25 sketchbooks which were then posted back to Ireland.. These drawings have proved to be a bridge to that extraordinary year and a major inspiration for him. While the paintings are done as a response to the drawings, there is also an aspect of reverie in the work an evocation of the moods, the people s and sights from that time.
‘Travel is a huge part of my life and provides me with a chance to explore being out of place. The strange and the very familiar overlap in every corner that Ive had the privilege to visit. In the end its always lovely to get home again among friends and family,
’To arrive where we started and know the place for the first time’.
LAUNCH OCT 26 19:30-21:00