THE FEELING OF PLACE
28th July - 6th August 2023
Oughterard Courthouse Arts Programme is delighted to present THE FEELING OF PLACE featuring Galway Aritists Fiona Cawley & Hilary Morley.
The works in this exhibition are rooted in place, and the emotional responses that both artists feel in relation to their surroundings, real or imagined. Both artists graduated from art college together and have exhibited widely as individuals. This is their first jointexhibition together.
Fiona Cawley has a BA in Art and Design. She is a painter working primarily in acrylic and oil. She is an expressive painter of narrative paintings depicting imagined scenarios with running themes about rural isolation and the effect of climate change. In 2020 she had a successful solo show in the Ballina Arts Centre and has been selected for numerous exhibitions. Fiona says “The paintings for this exhibition were painted mostly from my imagination and memories, not from reality. However, it came to my attention only recently, that some of the hidden houses in my paintings are near replicas of the distant houses amongst trees and fields in the far off landscape that I see from my back garden in Kinvara. Almost without knowing it, the landscape has become embedded in my psyche. So too has the current housing crisis. To have a home you can afford has become a luxury instead of a basic human right. I’ve painted houses like objects of desire dotted within the landscape. Other paintings are about the sanctity of nature, of having that precious bit of wild around you. I paint imagined garden or wildlife scenes that depict the effects of climate change around my home place. I never set out knowing what the subject matter will be about in any painting. I push paint around, shapes are made, then eventually inspiration comes and what I’m passionate about usually appears again and again and I take it from there.”
Hilary Morley is a mixed media artist with a BA in Fine Art. She specialises in collage and charcoal drawing. She reflects personal experiences in her work, sometimes through quirky representations of landscape and the familiar sights of West Galway. She has exhibited widely, and has curated exhibitions of fine craft. She is a member of Engage Art Studios in Salthill. Hilary says “The Feeling of Place is central to the kind of work I create. My themes relate to ordinary places and those that are in decline. I am saddened by the undervaluing of our environment and native architecture, be it rural or suburban. This is evident in the scenes that I have re-created for this exhibition. I set myself the challenge of using charcoal exclusively this time, and the marvellous space in Oughterard has given me a unique opportunity to stretch my practice in terms of size and ambition. Charcoal is an extraordinary medium with which I can generate a myriad of different effects. It facilitates light and dark, texture and mood and if things go wrong, I can rub it all out and start again!”
OCAP (Oughterard Courthouse Arts Programme) is a voluntary group that was formed to run Visual Arts Exhibitions during the Summer months in Ougterard Courthouse with support from both Oughterard Courthouse Conservation & Heritage Company and Galway County Council. The main aim of OCAP is to present a diverse range of Artists and Artistic Practices to the community in Oughterard. We also aim to provide an exceptional Exhibition Space for established and emerging Artists to showcase their Artwork.