Queens of Art

I am very excited for my upcoming exhibition Queens of Art exhibition at the Minerva Gallery during the Harold’s Cross Community Festival:

Local artist Sheila Flaherty will present an exhibition of her drawings (including one large wall drawing) at the Minerva Gallery* during the week of the festival.

Poet Catherine Ann Cullen will open the exhibition on Thursday, May 17, at 6pm.

Artist’s statement:  Queens of Art is a celebration of successful female artists throughout history. Consisting of 9 portraits, this series of art, focuses the spotlight on these artists and their stories. They serve to remind us of our own individual life goals and inspire us to strive towards them and find success as they have.

*Minerva Gallery is situated in Harold’s Cross beside Five Points coffee shop and across from the Maxol Petrol Station. Map at end of post
Title : Queens of Art
Artist: Sheila Flaherty http://artacademy.ie/
Curator: Eoin Mac Lochlainn https://emacl.wordpress.com/
Opening reception on Thursday the 17th of May at 6pm
Exhibition continues on Saturday 19th May 2-5pm
and Sunday 20th of May 12-5pm

 

  SOLD

 

 

   

What To Watch: Films for Art Lovers

If you like to learn about art, while being entertained and enjoying a bit of screen time from the comfort of your sofa, here are my top picks from Netflix, iTunes and RTÉ. Make some popcorn.

iTunes: Woman in Gold. (2015) IMDB rating: 7.3  (when it’s above a 7, you know you’re in for a great film)

Women in Gold, is a remarkable true story surrounding the Gustav Kilmt painting “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I”, often referred to as the Austrian Mona Lisa.

The film is set sixty years after Maria Altmann’s (played by Helen Mirren) nerve-wracking escape, fleeing her home in Vienna during World War II to emigrate to the United States with her husband Fritz. Adele Bloch-Bauer I, is Maria Altmann’s beloved aunt.

The portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I is one of many of her family possessions seized by the Nazis. However the Gustav Klimt painting, now more than a portrait of her aunt, has become a national treasure hanging in the Belvedere Gallery and valued at 135 million dollars. It becomes clear that the Austrian’s are not going to give it up easily.

Together with her young and inexperienced but courageous lawyer (Ryan Reynolds), she sets out on an incredible journey to reclaim what she believes is rightfully hers.

Woman in Gold is available on iTunes. You can watch the trailer here

Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I by Gustav Klimt

Picture Reference: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Netflix: Girl with a Pearl Earring. (2004) IMDB rating: 6.9 (so close!!)

You can check out a previous post Netflix for Art Lovers for a Renaissance inspired series but if it’s a film your after Girl with a Pearl Earring is beautiful. Now available on Netflix, Girl With A Pearl Earring, imagines the story of the model behind the famous Dutch masterpiece of the same name.

Based on the book by Tracy Chevalier it is not a factual story, we simply do not know very much about the real sitter for the Johannes Vermeer painting. Yet it gives us a glimpse of life in 17th century Delft and what it may have been like to live and paint there.

Vermeer is known as The Master of Light and this is reflected in the way the film is lit, in keeping with the style of his paintings. It is beautifully shot. I wasn’t sure how the book would translate on screen, given it is written from the point of view of the private thoughts of it’s heroine but it works. Scarlett Johansson is ideally cast as the protagonist  Greit.

You can check out the art based on the famous Vermeer painting, by the young artist’s of Art Academy’s Easter Camp here.

Girl with a Pearl Earring by Johannes Vermeer

Picture Reference: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

RTÉ One Citizen Lane (2018) IMDB: Not yet rated

“The contemplation of beauty is no idle practice, beauty speaks for the soul of man (or woman) , to our higher selves and any city that celebrates such practice, can truly be considered great.”

The cleverly named “Citizen Lane”,  tells the story of the man behind one of my very favourite and often under rated, art galleries here in Dublin, Ireland The Hugh Lane Gallery.  Hugh Lane is played by an unrecognisable Tom Vaughan-Lawlor, best known as Nidge to Love/Hate fans.

According to RTÉ the feature-length documentary is due to air on RTÉ later this year

“CITIZEN LANE – In Irish Cinemas May 18th
A Portrait of Hugh Lane: aesthete, collector, dealer, philanthropist.”

On Saturday 19th  there will be a screening plus Q&A with Mark O’Halloran, Sheila Ahern hosted by Esther McCarthy in Light House Cinema Tickets here https://lighthousecinema.ie/showing/showing-39821

You can watch the trailer here. 

Picture credits: Still from the trailer by Eclipse Pictures.

Upcoming Summer Camp at Art Academy:

 

New Year, Exciting Plans Ahead.

Happy new year from Art Academy. It’s a fresh new year and time to start making exciting plans. The nicest gift I received this Christmas was this diary from The National Gallery of Ireland. It is a weekly diary and has a different pieces of art from the collection to inspire on each page.

I had wrote a post on my top fav gift idea’s from the gallery shop. I had planned to pick one up in January and Breda Flaherty beat me to it. A beautiful gift to receive and it makes me feel excited for the year ahead. You can get yours at their store in the gallery on Merrion Square.  May your 2018 be wonderful.

This is my 3rd NGI diary and I am set to continue.

 

Netflix for Art Lovers

Dark evenings and constant talk of “it’s expected to snow” call for staying in by the crackling fire, comfort food and Netflix. If you love art and simultaneously are suffering Game of Thrones withdrawl, Medici, Masters of Florence on Netflix is just for you.

Medici: Masters of Florence tells the story of the rise to power of the Medici dynasty. The drama unfolds against the beautiful back drop of Renaissance Italy, in all of it’s architectural and artistic glory.

If you are missing “Robb Stark” Richard Madden plays the lead character Cosimo De Medici. John Bradley West of “Sam Tarley” fame plays a Medici cousin. Another GoT favourite Dustin Hoffman plays “Giovanni di Bicci de’ Medici”

IMDB rates the series 8/10. Season 1 was released on the 9th of December 2016 with Season 2 promised “by the end of the year” (2017?) Check it out on Netflix here

   

      Image Refs: Stills from the Netflix original series Medici Masters of Florence.

 

 

Drawing the The Late Late Toyshow Hot Chocolate Mug

I know I’m an adult but I love, love, love the Late Late Toyshow hosted by Ryan Tubridy. So for the night that’s in it, I made a quick sketch of the Toyshow mug. They are on sale in Penneys, along with a full range of Toyshow merchandise. Raising funds for Temples Street Children’s Hospital and Our Lady’s Hospital in Crumlin. Drinking hot chocolate from a cute, owl mug watching the Toyshow is the nicest charity endeavour ever.

I used coloured pencils from Faber Castell and the Uniball gel pen in white. Oh also a Derwent charcoal pencil, which is fast becoming a favourite of mine. To create your own drawing check out the step by step process pics below:

Large Selection of Large Format Art Books at the Central Library

The best way to view a work of art is, beyond doubt, to go and see it in person. A reproduction will never do it justice, especially in small format. Most libraries dotted around the country will have an art section with maybe a bookcase of art related books. If you would like to augment your gallery visits, of which Ireland has many world class, the Dublin City Council, Central Library in the Illac centre on Henry Street has an wonderful selection of large format art books. This is a section separate from the usual art bookshelf. It is located by the business centre. There are 2 alcoves full of large books on all of your favourite artists. Worth spending a coffee break browsing through.

Leonardo Da Vinci published by Taschen is a personal favourite.

  

Art Camp for grown-ups at Block T

As an artists and/or art teacher I believe that it absolutely imperative that we are  the perpetual learner. Here in Ireland there are little hidden pockets of artistic gold waiting to be absorbed. I  intend to seek these out, enjoy them for myself to build on my artistic knowledge but also share them with you.

One such gem can be found in Block T. Recently I have had the pleasure of completed the realism oil painting course there, under the expert tutelage of Florentine academy multi-award winning artist  Nicholas Benedict Robinson. I will share with you my journey on his course in the images below. It being by no means the poster model but it gives you some idea of how I progressed the painting. We worked from direct observation of the live model for 6 Wednesday evenings. Nicholas is an excellent teacher of this method.

The good news is there is another such upcoming workshop so don’t feel you have missed out. There is a full week coming up 31st July – 4th of August. Keep an eye on the Block T website and Nicholas’s website for further courses. You can check how I got on at the last workshop below:

Flesh tones; inspiration by the Great Masters at the newly refurbished National Gallery of Ireland

Detail from Head of a Bearded Man by Peter Paul Rubens

I am working on a painting at the moment. Experimenting with oils. By painting I mean realist, representational painting from life. It is a return to a childhood ideal.

As a teenager and even a child, my vision of what I thought attending art college would be like, was unbeknownst to me, already extinct. I had visited the National Gallery of Ireland as a child. Standing in awe before Caravaggio’s The Taking of Christ, I could feel that art was powerful. I needed to be involved in this alchemy. I wanted to learn to create it. I imagined, after school, I would attend something like, what was once The Metropolitan School of Art. There would be easels and drawing classes. There would be artists.

Art college was different from what I expected. I studied Graphic Design and Art and Education in the end. Learned plenty but something was missing. I practiced life drawing in my evenings and free time. Recently at a loose end, I tried oils. I didn’t know how to use them but from the moment I picked up a piece of oil paint and placed it on the canvas, I knew, there is magic here. No other medium will ever compare. It holds a richer and bolder quality than anything I have tried. And as much as I enjoy the graphic side of my work there is a realness to oil that no computer screen or camera can quite live up to.

I understand and believe we reside in an era of a New Renaissance. It is evident in every arena. Where once stood Galileo Galilei , we now explore space. Where Leonardo Da Vinci excelled in engineering, we are speeding ahead with technology. Science, music, theatre, film, literature and art are evolving. To progress the field of visual art we can look to the Old Masters as those in the Renaissance looked to Ancient Greece and Rome. It is my opinion that we must build on this past mastery and raise the standard of art here in Ireland. The National Gallery of Ireland is one place to start.

In order to better understand how Masters like Rembrandt and Rubens approached painting flesh tones, I returned to the place that inspired me as a child, the now recently refurbished National Gallery of Ireland. The NGI is stunning. Below are some studies from todays visit, concerning skin tones. It is wonderful the variation and wide spectrum of colour used to paint skin especially the unexpected colours like violets, greens and greys.

Detail from Lady Gregory by William Orpen

Detail from John Count McCormack by William Orphen

Detail from The Dead Ptarmigan by William Orphen

   Detail from Portrait of Henry Shefflin by Gerry Davis

Detail from Portrait of Philippe Roettiers by Nicolas de Largilliere

Full portrait 

Detail from Lady holding a glove by Rembrandt van Rijn

 

Image of the full portrait

I was especially drawn to the depiction of hair in this detail from Thomas pooley’s Sir Phillip Perceval

As above

Detail from Jupiter and Ganymede by Nicolaes van Helt Stockade

Detail from Saint John  the Baptist in the Wildereness attributed to Michele Desubleo

Detail from The Penitent Magdalene by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo

Bretonne by Roderick O’Conor

The Grand Gallery at the NGI

These images are a point of reference for my portrait studies but are best enjoyed in real life. A visit to the National Gallery is a must.