What do we want?

Sunday 7 April – Sunday 5 May 2024
What do we want? | Sunday 7 April – Sunday 5 May 2024 | Olivier Cornet Gallery | Image: Gail Ritchie, Doomsday Clock, watercolour on paper with clock mechanism | the artwork is in two parts; above, there is a circular wall clock with a black frame and black hour and minute hands, but red second hand; there is also what appears to be an extra hand, long, black and scraggly, and there is what may be painting on glass or cotton wool under the hands, shaped somewhat like a cloud from an explosion; below is the watercolour painting, in an almost-square black frame with wide white mat; the watercolour is of a black egg-timer in which we see blood-red ‘sand’ which is close to running out

The Olivier Cornet Gallery is delighted to present What do we want?

To begin, a quote from Antonio Guterres, the Secretary General of the United Nations: “Peace is needed today more than ever. War and conflict are unleashing devastation, poverty and hunger, and driving tens of millions of people from their homes.”

This group exhibition is a response to the increasingly dangerous geo-political situation in the world today. It features the work of four artists: Jill Gibbon, Eoin Mac Lochlainn, Tom Molloy and Gail Ritchie.

Jill Gibbon, a UK-based artist, makes the point that to stop wars, we have to address the arms trade. In this exhibition, the artist will show a selection of work she made in-situ at international arms fairs in Paris and London. Disguised as an arms trader, she draws attendees and collects ephemera from the stalls. Her pretence as a respectable businesswoman is a metaphor for the facade of respectability in the industry. Her sketchbook drawings presented as a concertina reveal the hidden truth. The exhibition will also include a selection of ‘gifts’ given away to attendees of these fairs. To quote Gibbon “Nothing conveys the chilling priorities of the arms trade as clearly as its marketing”.

Eoin Mac Lochlainn is an Irish artist based in Dublin. He has been making charcoal and wash drawings that explore the trauma of the Irish Civil War. This work put global conflicts in perspective for him and was a reminder that Peace should never be taken for granted. To quote President Michael D. Higgins: “We have to reject the suggestion that war is the natural human condition or indeed that xenophobia is a natural human condition, or that people of different religions or cultures cannot reconcile (and) live harmoniously… We have to pursue a new symmetry. Our very species’ survival depends on that, as does our relationship with other species.”

Tom Molloy is an Irish artist based in France. His practice has been concerned with the examination of power, in a political and historical context, and how it can, and has been perverted, which raises global questions about morality. For over a decade Molloy has been determined to challenge the observers’ perception, by creating ambiguous works that investigate the overlap between representation and association. In his line of questioning Molloy deliberately presents minimal representations of significant political and historical moments. In opposition to the clean, simplicity of the works presentation, the viewer finds conceptually rich, multi-layered meanings inherent to the artwork.

Gail Ritchie lives and works in Belfast. In this exhibition she will show a variety of works. One is a response to the most recent prediction by the Doomsday Clock that humanity is now 90 seconds from midnight, where midnight is the nuclear apocalypse. This work, together with the other pieces presented by the artist in this show, addresses the impact of conflict through a personal and political lens.

Sunday 7 April – Sunday 5 May 2024
Olivier Cornet Gallery
3 Great Denmark Street
(beside Belvedere College)
Dublin 1
Telephone: +353 87 2887261
Opening hours / start times:
Tues to Fri: 11am to 6pm (till 8pm on Thursdays) • Sat & Sun: 12 noon to 5pm • Closed on Mondays (or viewing by appointment only)
Admission / price: Free

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