Suzy O’Mullane (b. 1958, Liverpool, England) lives and works in Cork and shares her time between there and her studio in the south of France. She was the co-founder of Arttrail in Cork, Ireland and director from 1996 to 2002. From 2001 to 2004 O’Mullane was on the Board of the Triskel Arts Centre, Cork, and has been a contributor to Ireland’s critical art publication, Circa. She has been awarded several residencies in Cill Rialaig, Ireland, Paris and Berlin as well as several prestigious commissions.
O’Mullane has exhibited in private and state-funded galleries in London, Berlin, Italy and throughout Ireland. Her work has been exhibited at international art fairs including Art Miami, Art Chicago, Art Palm Beach and Art Toronto. O’Mullane’s work has been presented in fifteen solo exhibitions; recent solo exhibitions include the Crawford Municipal Gallery, Cork, Sirius Arts Centre, Cobh, Ireland and the Solstice Arts Centre in Navan, Co Meath, Ireland and Skotia Gallery, L.A. O’Mullane’s work was featured in ‘Wildly Different Things: New York and Dublin’, a major international exhibition presented by BlueLeaf Gallery/BlueLeaf Unlimited in Dublin in February-March 2010. O’Mullane’s work is held in private, public and corporate collections throughout Ireland, the UK, USA and in Europe.
O’Mullane’s work has evolved to employ multiple encoded forms that have become personal allegorical references for the artist. Throughout her practice she has applied correct draughtsmanship to enable a direct visual understanding of her forms. This visual clarity has provided a basis for extended considerations of O’Mullane’s deliberately altered perspectives and ambiguous projection of objects and references, both spatially and contextually. The artist’s adopted forms - hares, wolves, flowers, birds and female figures - are drawn from personal, historical, religious and mythological contexts and are intertwined with elements of light, darkness, colour, layering, gesturing and gaze. Collectively these elements provide significant keys to understanding O’Mullane’s imagery.
O’Mullane explains the use of her forms: “The intention of the work is to convey emotional and sometimes metaphysical connection, as well as absurd hypothetical situations. Humans and animals have interchangeable roles, and are devoid of accepted markers.”
“Questions of identity are always present in my work, particularly in the use of autobiographical reference. But my images acquire autonomy through repetition, layering and distillation. A useful analogy is to equate the imagery to a troupe of actors who assume different leading or subsidiary roles as required. Emotion is a very important component in my work and is implicitly registered in the imagery.”
In an essay entitled ‘Signs‘, Sean Kissane, Head Curator of Irish Museum of Modern Art writes: “Her figures are constantly torn between the representation of an individual and the universality which that figure represents. Just as line and colour distil notions of both of structure and emotion; so too do her subjects exist on multiple planes and function on different levels. The organic becomes a trope and the inorganic an emotion.”
1986 B.A. English & Geography, UCC, Cork, Ireland
1994 Diploma Fine Art, CCAD with Distinction
1995 B.A. (Hons.) Fine Art, Painting, Crawford College of Art & Design, Cork, Ireland
1996 Post Graduate in Painting, Crawford College of Art & Design, Cork, Ireland
Solo Exhibitions (recent)
2016 In Thrall To Caitlin, solo exhibition, Origin Gallery, Dublin
2015 There Was Nothing Good About Good Friday, Origin Gallery, Dublin
2011 ‘Cherie’, Skotia Gallery, Culver City, L.A.
2011 Gossamer Dress, Cill Rialaig Arts Centre, Co. Kerry
2011 ‘Tempest’, BlueLeaf Gallery, Dublin, Ireland. Opened by Séan Kissane, Head of Exhibitions, IMMA
2011 ‘The Blue Snake in the Shape of Infinity’, Sirius Arts Centre, Cobh, Co. Cork, Ireland.
2010 ‘Your Hair Blows in the Same Way as Mine’, Solstice Arts Centre, Navan, Co. Meath, Ireland
2009 ‘Trajectory Through Time and Space’, BlueLeaf Gallery, Dublin, Ireland
2006 ‘Mick’, Pigyard Gallery, Wexford, Wexford Opera Festival, Ireland
2005 ‘The Colour of Love and Loss’, Triskel Art Centre, Cork, Ireland. Curated by Alastair MacLennen
2005 ‘The Colour of Love and Loss’, Pembroke BlueLeaf Gallery, Dublin, Ireland
2003 ‘The Weimar Mouth’, Solo Show, Pembroke BlueLeaf Gallery, Dublin, and Crawford Muncipal Art Gallery, Cork, Ireland
2001 ‘Anatomy Of Discomfort’, BlueLeaf Gallery, Dublin, Ireland and at Siamsa Tire, Tralee, Ireland. Opened by Minister for Arts
1999 ‘The Butterfly Girls and Other Works’, Tig Fili Gallery, Cork, Ireland
1997 ‘Suzy O’Mullane: New Work’, U.C.C., Cork, Ireland
Group exhibitions, performances, events (selected)
2016 ‘Migratory Pathways and Insistent Ghosts’, video screening, with Julius Kozlowski, IndieCork Film Festival, Ireland
2016 Terra Firma Shorts, Terra Firma, Brooklyn, ‘Migratory Pathways and Insistent Ghosts 1 & 2 with Julius Kozlowski, In Yoko Implode.
2016 Context NYC art fair, with Gibbons & Nicholas Gallery
2016 Birth of a Nation (curated), group exhibition of Irish and Chinese artists at Ning Space, Beijing, Identity at EARC Beijing, and Struggle at Sanwei Art Centre, Shanghai
2015 ‘Migratory Pathways and Insistent Ghosts’, video screening, with Julius Kozlowski, IndieCork Film Festival, Ireland
2015 ’There Was Nothing Good About Good Friday’. Performance collaboration with Harry Moore, The Guesthouse, Cork, Ireland
2013 Tri, 3 person exhibition, J Cacciola Gallery NYC, curated by Ciara Gibbons (director Blueleaf Gallery, Dublin
2013 Art Miami, Art Toronto, with Blueleaf Gallery (Dublin) and J Cacciola Gallery (NYC)
2012 Sea of Exchange: Ireland - Los Angeles, curated by Cathy Weiss, LA Print Space, LA
2012 Still Lifes? With Regine Bartch, Katherine Boucher-Beug and Jane O' Malley. Catherine Hammond Gallery, Glengarriff, Co. Cork
2012 Art Wynwood with BlueLeaf Gallery, Miami, Art Miami, with Blueleaf Gallery
2011 Art Chicago, Merchandise Mart, with BlueLeaf Gallery, Chicago, US , Art Palm Beach, with BlueLeaf Gallery, Palm Beach, US
2010 Art Miami, BlueLeaf Gallery, Miami, US
2010 In Print with Michael Mulcahy’, Urban Retreat Gallery, Dublin, Ireland. Opened by Campbell Bruce.
2010 ‘Michael Quane Selects’, Lavit Gallery, Cork, Ireland. Opened by Alannah Hopkin.
2010 ‘Wildly Different Things: New York & Dublin’, BlueLeaf Gallery/BlueLeaf Unlimited, Dublin. Curated by Ciara Gibbons and Jane Ross, Dublin/ Karim Hamid, Andreas Kuefer, Giulia Coccia and Elena Avesani, New York
2009 ‘Expressions and Revelations’, BlueLeaf Gallery at the Menier Gallery, London, UK
Crawford Municipal Gallery
Private collections in Ireland, USA, UK, Germany
Commissions, Grants, Awards
Portrait of Aidan Higgins Crawford Municipal Gallery, private commissions
Artflight, Arts Council of Ireland 1998
Culture Ireland for Art Toronto (through Blueleaf Gallery) 2011
Culture Ireland for Art Miami (through Blueleaf Gallery) 2013
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