June 3, 2011

IMMA 20th Anniversary: Twenty exhibition, Dublin, Ireland

Twenty: Celebrating 20 Years of the Irish Museum of Modern Art 
IMMA, Dublin
Through 31 October 2011

Twenty features 20 younger-generation Irish and international artists, whose work is increasing prominent in the global visual arts arena.  The exhibition is the centrepiece of a wide-ranging programme celebrating the 20th anniversary of the foundation of the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA) on Friday 27 May 2011. Twenty: Celebrating 20 Years of the Irish Museum of Modern Art continues until 31 October 2011. Many of the works are being shown for the first time, having recently been acquired with special funding from the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. The new works echo the Museum’s acquisition 20 years ago of works by leading younger artists of the day, many of whom went on to have a close and mutually beneficial relationships with IMMA in the intervening years. 

Drawn from IMMA’s Collection, the works in Twenty include installations, photography, painting and sculpture. Commonalties and dialogues appear between the works, but the exhibition seeks to allow sufficient space that each may be viewed as representing an individual practice. For example, Katie Holten’s 137.5 / It started on the c train, 2002, a web-like wall installation made from crochet, started on the subway in New York and continued as the artist traveled around Eastern Europe. Another work, Memorial Gardens, 2008, by Niamh O’Malley was made while O’Malley was participating in IMMA’s Artists’ Residency Programme. It presents footage taken in the nearby WarMemorial Gardens in Islandbridge projected on to etched-primed aluminum, creating an unreal, chimera type effect of distance and loss. Works by Orla Barry, Stephen Brandes, Nina Canell, Fergus Feehily, Patrick M FitzGerald, John Gerrard, David Godbold, Paddy Jolley, Nevan Lahart, Niamh McCann, Willie McKeown, Perry Ogden, Liam O'Callaghan, Alan Phelan, Garrett Phelan, Eva Rothschild and Corban Walker are also shown, together with a borrowed piece by Irish artist Sean Lynch. 

Many of the Irish artists live abroad – in New York, Berlin, Vienna or London – reflecting the increasingly international environment in which their work is now seen.  The significance of IMMA’s Artists’ Residency Programme, established in 1994, is also evident as many of the artists in Twenty have participated in the programme at some point, including Orla Barry, David Godbold, Liam O’Callaghan, Niamh O’Malley, Sean Lynch, Paddy Jolley, Katie Holten, Nevan Lahart, Alan Phelan and Garrett Phelan. 

Irish Museum of Modern Art 
Royal Hospital 
Dublin 8