Emma O’Hara: Strangers we will stay
‘Strangers we will stay’ is the new exciting solo exhibition by Emma O’Hara.
Following a recent residency in Rimbun Dahan Arts Centre in Kuala Lumper, O’Hara’s new work builds on her experience of living and working in the jungle to generate sensory explorations of imagined paradises. These boldly colourful and abstracted dreamscapes exist outside of time and space, immersing the viewer in O’Hara’s vision while granting them access to her experiences, ambitions and motives.
These emotionally charged works depict lush and verdant fantasy landscapes, evoking a sense of reverie, nostalgia and wanderlust through vivid works on paper and ceramic vessels. O’Hara’s confidence with colour and use of strong abstract shapes paired with the spontaneity of her mark-making remind the viewer that this is a dream, a fluid, shifting space that is both eternal and fleeting.
The various scales and materials add to the dreamscape, with landscapes growing and shrinking, becoming ferociously lucid or subtly delirious. Conjuring the memory of a landscape rather than a specific site, the work acts as a gentle but poignant reminder of the precarious nature of our own natural environment and our obligation to protect it.
Emma O’Hara is a visual artist based in Cork City, Ireland. She graduated with a BA in Printmaking in Contemporary Practice from Limerick School of Art and Design (2016). O’Hara was awarded the Cork Printmakers 12-month Bursary (2016) where she has continued to hone and expand her visual practice. She was also the recipient of the 2021 Arts Council Agility award. O’Hara has exhibited in numerous National and International exhibitions and her work is included in a number of private and public collections, including the OPW.