The Molesworth Gallery
 

Niall McCormack

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Scattered ~ oil on canvas ~ 44 x 44 inches

 

Niall McCormack

Pastel Gothic

June 12th - 27th, exhibition opened by Olive Braiden, Chair of the Arts Council

Superficially, Niall McCormack's recent work deals in a familiar visual currency of the most tangible feature of the now-fading Celtic Tiger years: the burgeoning property market and the proliferation of housing 'units' that has become a ubiquitous subtext to the contemporary Irish landscape. McCormack, it seems, is presenting as an appositely familiar artistic metaphor.
His meticulously rendered structures evoke architectural accuracy, and are effected with painstaking attention to detail. And yet these uniformly windowed housing units and agglomerations lack doors or chimneys - features that would render the structures practical and habitable. Thus the buildings enter the realm of the surreal, ciphers that reflect the artist's own concerns.
The faceless uniformity of McCormack's houses creates a sense of disquiet and foreboding, of soullessness. It speaks of isolation and the contradictions of living together but being apart - a house not as the clichéd home but rather as an instrument of separation, of incarceration, even. The long, hard shadows cast hint at the melancholic urban landscapes of de Chirico or Sironi. The houses are located within an amorphous landscape of contours and horizons devoid of any natural features that would impart a sense of authentic,

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Crux ~ oil on canvas ~ 40 x 30 inches

 

gritty reality: even the silhouettes of Croagh Patrick and Clew Bay (the geography of the artist's own experience) exist as schematic notes: context uncontextualised.
The buildings are cold and precisely delineated, and the only warmth to be found in a uniformly cool palette is in the ironic pastel shades that adorn the walls of the buildings - hues that aspire to a received perception of 'niceness' but are all the more jarring and unsettling for the apparent disingenuousness of that intention.
The larger institutional agglomerations of McCormack's architectural phylum are clearly created from smaller individual units, a metaphorical as well as visual allusion to the hierarchical nature of societal structure. The resultant configurations - angular and uncompromising - seem particularly at odds with their pale mix-and-match plumage, presenting as a disquieting kind of ‘Pastel Gothic’. They suggest echoes of institutional settings, with their own associative disquiets within the contemporary consciousness.
McCormack's paintings are not proposed designs

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Pink interior ~ oil on canvas ~ 20 x 16 inches

 

for living. Rather, they quietly but effectively offer warnings: of the consequences of isolationism both externally and internally imposed; of faceless institutional unaccountability; and of the dehumanising and aesthetically bereft tendencies of unregulated commodification.

Ian Wieczorek, artist

Niall McCormack

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2008 Molesworth Gallery, 16 Molesworth Street, Dublin 2
2005 Custom House Studios Gallery, Westport, Co. Mayo
2002 Custom House Studios Gallery, Westport, Co. Mayo
1998 Solo show, Diorama Art Gallery, London.

 

SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2007 RHA 177th Annual Exhibition, Ely Place, Dublin.
2007 Winter Show, Molesworth Gallery, Dublin.
2007 Mayo Artists Show, Linenhall Arts Centre, Castlebar, Co. Mayo.

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~Sanctuary~ oil on canvas ~ 20 x 16 inches

 

2006 Group Exhibition, Woburn Gallery, Euston, London.
2002 Washburn Art Building, Gallaudet University, Washington, D.C.
2002 "Altered Perspective" The Millennium Arts Center, Washington, D.C.
2001 Generate Exhibition, Hull, North England
2001 Deaf Eyes Exhibition, Media Centre, Islington, London.
2000 TraninArt 2000 Exhibition, Trani, Italy

1999 Diorama Artists Group show, Diorama Art Gallery, London.
1999 Christmas Show, Kevin Kavanagh Gallery, Dublin.
1998 Group Show - 'New Still Life' Jo Rain Gallery, Dublin.
1998 Deaf Arts Now! Exhibition, Stockholm, Sweden.
1997 Multimedia project - CD ROM production by five deaf artists at the Photographers' Gallery, London.

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Reflection ~ oil on canvas ~ 20 x 16 inches

 

EDUCATION AND TRAINING

National College of Art and Design, Dublin.
studied Fine Art - Painting: BA (Hons) in Fine Art (2.1)

Dun Laoghaire School of Art and Design, Dublin.
studied Art and Design Foundation Course.
Certificate in Visual Education.

Birkbeck College, University of London.
Diploma in Arts Management

 

COLLECTIONS

Westport Town Council
Mayo County Council
Leinster Society Of Chartered Accountants
University of Limerick
Mary Hare Grammar School, Newbury, Berkshire, England
Gallaudet University, Washington DC, USA
See Hear, BBC, London, England
Numerous Private Collections both at home and abroad.

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Grey Exterior ~ oil on canvas ~ 20 x 16 inches

 

 

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Millenium Tower ~ oil on canvas ~ 48 x 36 inches

 

 

Niall McCormack ~ Housing Unit, 2008 ~ oil on canvas ~ 12 x 16 inches

 

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ External Contradictions ~ oil on canvas ~ 22 x 44 inches

 

 

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Enclosure ~ oil on canvas ~ 16 x 20 inches

 

 

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ In memory of a residential institution ~ oil on canvas ~ 16 x 20 inches

 

 

McCormack

Niall McCormack ~ Hierarchy ~ oil on canvas ~ 24 x 18 inches

 

 

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