Stephanie Deady: Measure for Measure
Historically, in western painting, there is an art of drama and spectacle, and there is an art of quietness. The extrovert and the introvert. Stirring, dramatic events and moments of inner revelation. Stephanie Deady’s work is aligned with the latter, with interior life. As the art of painting developed in Europe, for a time spectacle seemed to gain the upper hand: with mannerism, the baroque and rococo, things got quite turbulent. But a more restrained mode of expression has always been there. It was especially evident among the painters of the early Renaissance, for example.
In their work, one often finds that crucial moments and events, usually of biblical and religious significance, hinge on the implicit, intimate exchange of information between central figures. In Simone Martini’s golden, radiant, early 14th century Annunciation, made for Siena Cathedral, a stream of words spelled out in a straight line – Ave gratia plena dominos tecum (May the grace of god be with you) – occupies the yawning central space between the angel and the virgin, flanked by saints Margaret and Ansanus.
Previously, Stephanie Deady’s work has focused largely on spaces: domestic and functional interiors, with a strong feeling of habitation though few specifically figurative elements. These environments were charged with a degree of uncertainty, slightly unmoored, reflecting the inevitably fallible processes involved in vision, cognition and memory. Yet while the work was in some respects quite formally austere, there was consistently a resolute core of emotional warmth.
Extract from an accompanying text by Aidan Dunne
Stephanie Deady graduated with a BA in Fine Art from Limerick School of Art and Design in 2014. Recent solo and group exhibitions include SILVER, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2019), Hennessy Craig Award, Shortlisted Group Show, RHA Dublin (2019), Make Haste Slowly, Goeth-Institut Irland, Dublin (2018), Island Life, Kevin Kavanagh Dublin (2018), Primed Vision, Solo Exhibition, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2018), An Act of Hospitality can only be Poetic, Highlanes Gallery Drogheda curated by Linda Shevlin and Aoife Ruane (2018), Atrium Space, ‘Temple Bar Gallery + Studio’s 6th Annual ‘Dublin Art Book Fair’ (2016). Deady was shortlisted for the RHA Hennessy Craig Biennial Award in 2019 and was awarded MA Art in the Contemporary World Scholarship NCAD in 2018.
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