14th June –7th August 2021
at Wexford Arts Centre, Cornmarket, Wexford
Wexford Arts Centre are pleased to present Ochre, an exhibition of new paintings by artists Ciara Roche and Emma Roche. The exhibition will run in the lower and upper galleries from Monday 14 June to Saturday 7 August 2021.
essay by Maeve Connolly
Co-director of the ARC MA programme at IADT Maeve ConnollyDownload
Ochre, an anagram of the artists’ surname, presents work by two artists who share a sense of heritage and place – both live in different parts of rural County Wexford – but their works look nothing alike.
Ciara Roche’s small-scale studies of recreation and retail sites are curiously devoid of people. It is apparent that it is the artist’s intention for the painted space to exist for the viewer to inhabit. The works are made quickly in an attempt to capture the experience of visiting these spaces and yet, the attention to detail and treatment of light and colour has the effect of creating a world that is vividly alive. Painted surfaces of shopping centre interiors and display stands glisten with all that is seductive and at the same time, unsettling about consumerism.
Emma Roche’s works shift between the figurative and abstract combining knitting or tapestry methodologies and painting to create layered and textured works. The artist explores ideas related to day-jobs, waged and unwaged work, pregnancy and motherhood. Enquiries into labour and employment, and our attitude toward them are present in the knitted paintings and rugs which are made with long lines of dried paint and used like wool or thread. Ideas concerning how we structure and organise time is highlighted through these painted forms as the labour involved in their production is apparent.
While the works of these two artists may not look anything alike on the surface, on deeper inspection it is clear that they share the same motivation to paint as they try to understand their place in the world. Traditional female elements appear in both artist’s work; the presence of crafts and the body in Emma’s paintings and the seductive leisure interiors and elongated mannequins that Ciara presents question femininity and assigned roles, and often subvert these through absence and abstraction. The work also curiously reflects on how these female artists are shaped by their location – culturally and socially.
Ciara Roche is a painter based in rural County Wexford. Upcoming exhibitions include a solo show in Mothers Tankstation Gallery, Dublin (2021), HOME with the Glucksman, Cork (2021) and PeripheriesMEET, Periphery Space Gorey, Co. Wexford (2021). Recent exhibitions include a solo in the Lab Gallery, Dublin and shows in VISUAL Carlow, Lismore Castle Arts, Sirius Arts Centre and the Royal Irish Academy. In 2020, Ciara won the Éigse Graduate prize with Carlow Arts Festival, and she has been recipient of an Arts Council Bursary, and a Creative Ireland and Artlinks Awards. As part of a collective of three artists, she was awarded a Wexford County Council Per Cent Per Art Commission which resulted in a community-based post card project in Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford in 2019.
Emma Roche is a painter living and working in Wexford, Ireland. She is a recipient of the Visual Arts, Arts Council Bursary Award, 2020, Creative Ireland Bursary Award, 2020 and was shortlisted for PLATFORM 31 Bursary, 2021. Upcoming and recent exhibitions include SPIDERS AND CHEERLEADERS, Ground Floor Gallery, The Complex, Dublin, (2021); and Forward Slash, LAB Gallery, Dublin (2018). Selected group shows include VISUAL Carlow (2020 and 2019); Turps Gallery, London (2018); and Green On Red Gallery, Dublin (2018).
Ochre will run at Wexford Arts Centre from from Monday 14 June to Saturday 7 August 2021. It is supported by Creative Ireland.
Gallery hours: Monday-Friday from 10am-5pm and Saturday from 10am-4pm
Wexford Arts Centre is supported by the Arts Council and Wexford County Council.
For further information on Ochre or artists Ciara Roche or Emma Roche please contact Catherine Bowe – Curator, Wexford Arts Centre, Cornmarket, Wexford on +353 (0)53 91 23764 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.