Ray Obrien 2801361
End of Year Exhibition by the IOP
It was a cold February Sunday Morning, when I decided to attend a photographic exhibition in Dublin with a difference, called “End of Year Exhibition”, this was a group of students who attended the Institute of Photography’s Portfolio & Exhibition Course in 2010, and it was showcasing their 6 months work and effort.
It was being held in the Eircom/Meteor Headquarters, Dublin on the 26-28 February 2010 and was displaying the students work. The Artists and titles were Alan Connor, Hidden depths, David Greene, Kitchen view, Noeleen McCormack, Textured flowers, Orna Cassidy, Rugby, Sean Brosnan, A day in the life of a golf ball, Steve McDonnell, Abstract smoke art and Thomas Glover, Painting with light, who have attended this course ran by the IOP. And at the end of the course, they have their exhibition. “it is designed to bring students through the rigors, both creative and logistical, of putting on their first exhibition” Dave McKane, Curator
Dave McKane is the principal of the IOP (Institute of Photography, 14-16 Lord Edward Street, Old City Temple Bar, Dublin 2) who runs training courses in photography related subjects for every type of photographer from novice to semi-pro. He has a long history in the design business and the photographic industry. This is the second exhibition for this course, there was also one last year in 2009.
... courses in different approaches in photography including photojournalism, scientific photography or commercial photography. Students may learn all approaches in ... imaging and the use of color in photography. Forensic photography workshops train students in the procedures for collecting evidence, ... the various types of equipment used in forensic photography, such as infrared or ultraviolet light, to ...
“Work can’t begin in earnest until the idea has been bedded down. This can mean a few false starts but all the participants have worked tirelessly to bring their projects to final completion”. Dave McKane
On entering the huge foyer of the Eircom building, you are greeted with a security guard behind the desk and asked to sign in, after this you are directed to the exhibition. As you enter the exhibition there is a table on the right with a detailed brochure of the artist profile and a background history, the prints have all be framed differently which I felt helped to separate even more the individual artists. The relationship between the themes of the group also was different, techniques and style emerged different also, but the black and white work still stands out for me, as to define a clear message being portrayed.
The first piece of work I came across was Hidden depths. And is a collection of black and white portrait images of modern day bikers from the North and South of Ireland. The second was Kitchen View, which was a selection of colour images showing off the signiﬁcant role of products and appliances in Irish Kitchens. The third was Textured Flowers, which is a varied selection of different flowers. The fourth was called Rugby, a choice of action shots from a match. The fifth was A day in the life of a golf ball, a down low view point of a golf ball. The sixth exhibition was abstract smoke art and the seventh was painting with light, with some spot colouring.
The area was well laid out with plenty of distance between each exhibition, furthermore there was a front and a backside to each exhibition allowing you to continue around a single exhibition if required. Large plain white backgrounds with nice framed pieces not cluttered but hung in an almost lone fashion.
Overall each of the small exhibitions was well presented and attention to detail was adhered to. The artists come from different backgrounds and eras, but one thing is for sure, the dedication and professionalism comes true in their work.
Some of the exhibition was, in my opinion lacking creativity, such as Tomas Glover’s painting with light, it is more a Photoshop madness and the images from Steve McDonnell such as the smoke abstract has been done before, the rugby images from Orna Cassidy, clearly show a diverse range of views, which would be different from the typical sports photography, her images depict a feeling of been in the middle of the action. Textured flowers were plain and uninteresting to me; the same could be said of the day in the life of a golfball, not overly creative concepts.
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So down to my favorite theme, it was the hidden depts. by Alan Connor. We all have the stereotypes of the hairy biker and his gang which roam the highway, like the hells angels, fully tattooed, mean, fat, well, these images actually remind me of the old Irish Celts or the Clans from the Tir na Og days, really cool. I felt this theme was very inspiring and innovative work and I personally taught it very enriching.
These bikers give a true, real hard-hitting image of people who bike in Ireland, and who have an almost Celtic spiritual connection with their bikes. They come across as hard tattooed men (women), with their leather jackets and beards, some with long hair and some with bald heads, you really get a sense of character from these images.
“There is a way of life in Ireland that is fraught with contradictions. Oﬀering the solitude of sole pursuit but yet one, which exists within a powerful group loyalty and friendship. They present an image that can sometimes-illicit fear and suspicion, yet as a body, raise more money for charity than any other sector in Ireland. Irish bikers indulge in a way of life and social activity that is founded on a love of two wheels, the enjoyment of the ride, the mechanical challenge and discourse, a powerful and heightened sense of camaraderie, with passion and dedication to their bike, club and fellow bikers” Alan Connor
The black and white style used, along with the subject matter in their environment works really well and gives a good sense of realism to the images. They are also historical prints to the biking community and have an edgy style to them. In terms of composition of the bikers, the photographer has tried to include either some sort of personal aspect to their subject.
At the exhibition, this one stuck out the most, mainly I would say because I like the rugged look of these photographs and got to talk to one or two of the subjects directly, who were very nice. Alan Connor seems to have more experience than the others in my opinion; it definitely shows through his work.
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On the down side there was only two artists present on the Sunday morning and I would have liked to discuss some of the other exhibitions with them.
The exhibition itself is aimed at showcasing their work from the course but is done in a very clever way. Overall its great to see students of photography, put on a private exhibition which has been put forward to the public as a professional genuine collective of artists out there producing art, weather you like them or not, these seven artists have had their first exhibition.
Well worth a visit to see all seven exhibitions.