The paintings I make, explore or refer to the visual doorways of the beyond, the transitional state between death and life. In Tibetan Buddhism these doorways are known as 'Bardos'. With Zen there is simplicity, a paring away of the unnecessary. I combine these two methods, Tibetan practice with Zen aesthetics.
Mindfully attaching the linen canvas to the wooden stretcher, grinding and mixing the raw pigment into paint is an integral process of my painting. I become familiar with the object, I begin to know it.
Sometimes I have a clear idea of what I’m about to paint, other times the image appears as I progress, but always kept within a strict order of circle or square or both.
For this show I use Ultramarine – the transcendental, glorious and expensive pigment used for religious icons for centuries, particularly beautiful in combination with gold leaf. Through trial and research I have formulated my own deep matte finish, achieving a deep intensive absorbing colour.
My work is titled as Gaeilge, in a language that was suppressed and all-but eradicated by successive British governments in Ireland. I affirm my personal ties with the Irish diaspora, in solidarity with other oppressed minoritarian populations who do not have a voice.
Please spend a moment to gaze into the ‘Blue’ doorways beyond.
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