1. a magazine based in NCAD that promotes the work of its students.
1. without addition; basic and simple.
2. without clothing or covering.
1. uncover and expose to view.
Editor's Note bare igreat i ve bare i ve aking againe graphic deign i fun i hpe nbdy ever decde thi eage that wd be ebaraing fr e and e ther pepe a i ve ncad gdbye ncad y u have been gd te a i ve bare bare i great i hpe thiagaine print we that wud ake y day becaue if it didn't and we had put af thi tie and effrt it that wud be awfu.
People + objects = conversation. 56
Dearbhla NĂ FhaoilleachĂĄin Ryan & Conor Foran.
Divulging geopolitical origins and the Soviet woman.
Reframing the way we view disused urban space.
Focusing on conceptual design, the reaction of the user and lots of spikes.
Documenting the societal undertones of Tallaght.
Exploring the oddities of the English language.
Spray-painting, mask-making and influencing each otherâ€™s artistic practice.
Dara & Sophia
Discovering the essence of play.
Turning back time and the importance of research.
How studying paint doesnâ€™t always involve using paint.
Print, paint, instagram and irony.
Fabienne Renaudin Exploring the oddities of the English language Visual Communication Alumna
Erasmus / Internship
My French background definitely inspired Do You Know What I Mean?*. I knew even before going into final year that I wanted to do something languagebased, because I hadn’t had the opportunity to do it before. I’ve always been really interested in language in general, especially French.
Erasmus was the best experience I had in college. My identical twin sister, Emilie, was in the faculty of Education and she was over there for the first semester, and I was there in the second semester — in the same class! I wouldn’t have been able to get through final year without the Erasmus. I knew I was going to do the Erasmus before I even came to NCAD, but just because I’m half French. Doing an Erasmus can be such a risk though. You can go over and expect it to be amazing and if it’s not, you’ve just wasted half a year.
The class structure is very different and they’re really dedicated over there. I went to the École Supérieure des Arts Appliqués, Duperré. The standard is unreal. They do law based on copywriting your work, economics based on pricing your work, and they do philosophy as well. One class a week we had fine art, so we did life-drawing. We did digital life drawing too. There were so many technical classes too — the basics of Photoshop etc. On Fridays there was the history of design and typography. They were big into multidisciplinary stuff too. The students there were so ready for the real-world, for industry. They had six month placements and had to write reports about it.
B Do You Know What I Mean?*
It changed me as a designer so much. Every aspect over there is designed. I think we have really great design here, but I was much more aware of it in Paris — it just seemed to be everywhere. But I think we’re getting there in Dublin. I’m not sure if we’ll reach Dutch Design standard, but maybe we will. It depends on who starts the studios and that’s going to be us. It’s always what you don’t have that excites you. Paris excited me because it was all so new, a new approach. You can have a new approach here in Dublin but I think it means you just need to work that bit harder. When you’re used to a place, you need to work harder to make it new and fresh. We need something to shock our systems.
Gerard Nolst Trenité
An exploration into the oddities and irregularities of the English language
When I was in Paris on my Erasmus, I sent applications out for internships from April to May. I’d emailed Designworks in Dublin around June, and the creative director emailed me and said, ‘Yeah we’d love to take you on — when can you start?’. I was meant to stay at Designworks for a month but I actually stayed for three. It was amazing. The experience really gets you ready. The Creative Director of Designworks, Rocky, was at the graduate showcase and then from there he asked me back to do some more work.
I didn’t properly start Do You Know What I Mean?* until after the International Society of Typographic Designers submission (ISTD). It was late February or March. ISTD was great because it’s the reason how I knew how to make everything that I did for Do You Know What I Mean?*. I would recommend every Visual Communication student do ISTD. It’s more of an experience of learning — this is coming from someone who wasn’t awarded ISTD. At the time I was annoyed, but not everyone can win these things. If they gave it to everyone, it wouldn’t be special. I was messing around with the idea of typography and how that works with English and how bizarre and irregular English is. How are people meant to understand it? How are you meant to understand ‘jeans’ and ‘genes’?
Do You Know What I Mean?* is what I would consider a platform that aims to highlight projects that are based around language. I didn’t get to that extent with my degree show, but that’s always the way: you start with a big idea and it becomes a smaller, more refined idea in the end. I wanted it to be a website or a publication, sort of like It’s Nice That, but just for language-based projects. My outputs were based on the idea that they would all be coming from Do You Know What I Mean?*. I wanted it to be light-hearted. When reading it, someone who speaks English fluently would say, ‘That’s funny because we actually do that, we’re so silly.’ And then for some who speaks it brokenly to read it and say, ‘Yeah, I’ll remember that, and that’s why this makes no sense.’ So in that way the project has got a dual purpose.
I researched linguistics but spoke to the director of U-Learn, an English language school. I had a chat with him and his students. I also spoke with my dad a lot. He was the perfect source. He came here thirty years ago and couldn’t speak a word of English. He speaks fluently now, but he still makes mistakes and little grammatical things that are funny to me. I mean I do the same in French, but there’s so much more structure to French language. When you read loads of articles about how bizarre English is, you definitely become more aware of the challenges people have to face in order to learn this language. I’ve always understood the struggles of learning languages. That’s why I found this work so interesting because I finally got to go down deep into it and explore what it’s actually all about.
I always thought it was going to be a completely typography-based project. From the start, even having meetings with tutors, they were very sure it was all just going to be type. But I think with this kind of project, speech and the way you say things is so important so that’s where the video came in. The publication itself has articles on English language reform, spelling and how bizarre English is. From that, I had the video piece — the poem The Chaos by James Noel Trenité. The video was a group of people reading the poem, with English as a first or as a second language. I also made web games, and they were basically based off of the illustrations of the book. They are centred around phrases that we say, but don’t think about — like if people who don’t speak English heard us saying them, they wouldn’t make any sense — like, ‘the cat’s out of the bag’. If you said that to someone who doesn’t speak English fluently, they’d be like, ‘where’s the cat?’ They wouldn’t be like, ‘Aaah someone’s spilled a secret.’ There’s loads of them, we all say them. I picked two and with the help of my good friend Joey, a web developer, we made the web toys. He put up with me just for the last few weeks. I probably could have done the games typographically, but I think with the way everything was linking together it was right to let it expand.
Learning New Things
I knew very basic coding but I knew that this was the time where I could learn and experiment with it and that’s so important. You will have time after you graduate of course to experiment, but where will you get the chance to actually incorporate that into a project? And learn it in an environment where people are trying to teach you how to do things? I was originally just going to create the games in AfterEffects — just an animation version of it being played. Then I went to my tutor and he said, ‘Why don’t you actually just code it?’. This was May. So looking back I was just lucky that I knew Joey who I met in my internship to help me.
Final year is the most important time for learning. Whatever you don’t learn here, or whatever you aren’t taught — just go learn it yourself. It’s hard but you’ve got to stick with it. If you want to incorporate something into your project, then you have to do it. I don’t think you should do it for the sake of it but if it is linked to your project then go for it. If you can do it, it’s also for the skill. It’s a little notch in your belt, in your design belt. At the end of the day, the book and the work was going to be exhibited in the degree show. When someone walks in, the first thing they wanna do is play with your work. I always think the most interaction you can get, the better. However this obviously depends on the project. But in everyday life you don’t always have the opportunity to do these wacky things. So why not do them now? @fabienneren
Eoin Haide Documenting the societal undertones of Tallaght.
Media — Final Year
Everything I do is about my area. It’s about Tallaght — it’s the only thing that I liked and was interested in. The stories and everything that are around my estate could be on Eastenders or whatever. It’s stuff that happens weekly, even daily, it’s fucking crazy. And the characters that are there. It’s just endless material. My notebook is my heaven. My notebook just gets filled it does. Fill that thing — fill it. Make it full of knowledge. In first year, I just started taking photos. Before then, I’d never even picked up a camera. All my stuff from first year until the middle of second year was mostly just all on my phone. Just taking flicks on my phone. You wouldn’t believe how many pictures are on my phone.
In first year we got a brief about place. So I picked my estate. I added text into the images, and put them in black and white. Then because of this my tutor thought I was looking at Willie Doherty, but I’d never seen any of his work before in my life. So I ended up looking at his work and it was banging. It was the first piece of work I fully understood. For me, art was always about communicating. Art is like an essay you read out to the world. That’s what I think art is like. I was so excited looking at that work. I didn’t like print or paint. Me and painting just don’t mix. I just love anything that is screen-based. That just led into second year. And I just kept cruising. I hated Media in second year at first. The start was all about drawing and I just couldn’t get interested. But eventually I got to go back to doing what I wanted. And now I’m here doing the final year project. It’s cruising along anyway, she’s cruising.
I started a project on a young fella that lives in my estate. He robbed two or three shops and got caught for the first one. With the second one, he robbed a pizza place with a chainsaw. I just thought it was the most ridiculous idea ever. The one shop to pick out, there was a bookies there so why would you go and rob a pizza shop with a chainsaw? What was his plan? I was just amazed. The whole thing started from newspapers and that, like what’s happening with young people in the area. The same things kept coming up: robberies, assaults, anti-social behaviour, going off with bikes and cars. Robbing cars is the most common thing. I made up my own skit, of me acting out how I’d rob the shop and I did a load of maps and all that. Then I started looking at joyriding and stuff in my estate. My mate got locked up for something stupid — he was actually in one of the articles that I found. I was talking to him after about being locked up. The first thing that was said to him [in prison] was, ‘You’re from Tallaght’ and ‘TJR.’ He didn’t understand at the time but it means ‘Tallaght Joyriding.’ He didn’t have a clue because he didn’t know anything about cars. But everyone knows what TJR stands for — it’s spray painted everywhere.
That must have been our image, I thought. In everyone’s family there’s so much to do with cars and people crashing, so many stories. Even the roads, they’re getting blocked off now. Nevermind the people but it’s affecting the landscape of Tallaght. It’s mad. Everywhere is scorched. And it’s not a thing that has ever gone away, it’s always been there. I found articles recently that have photographs from the eighties. Everyone in the community used to make tracks for all the joyriders. I found where the track is, for my end-of-year project that’s where I wanna make some work. I’m doing aerial views with a drone and I’m going to track a bike.
If you look on my Instagram you’ll see that I’m now taking pictures of people. I never really did that. I only ever took photographs of the places. I’ve only now started doing it and I find it mad fascinating, just by how they dress.What I’ve also started doing is taking pictures of people’s shoes. I saw a thing in the Irish Independent and it was about suicide in Dublin. This guy did a big protest thing outside the Dáil. What he did was he got loads of different shoes that represented each person. You can tell who a person is by their shoes. So I just want to take photos of people’s clothes and shoes and not their faces. I think if you include the face it draws away from the actual character. I think there’s other ways that better describe a person. I want to push it more. Even the place describes the people. Just even by the shape; everything affects who you are.
It always starts with how people our age are perceived in the media. I really don’t understand how someone could judge anybody by their colour or anything like that. I couldn’t care less if you’re pink, white, yellow — whatever you wanna be I don’t care. I don’t understand why people judge others based on their background. It doesn’t make sense to me. I’d have articles open and most of them would just be all focused on the youth in a bad way. With all kinds of youth culture, there’s always something negative. All youth cultures come from struggle. But then in the end they’ll make a documentary about it describing how cool it all was, that they did this and created that kind of music and all that. Think about the last ten years with the recession and the amount of pressure that was there just for people to try and better themselves. How can you try and better yourself when there’s no way out? What’s the first thing you’re going to do? If you’re around robberies and assaults in your estate, what way are you going to think? You’re going to think just like them.
If you think about the Irish subcultures, it’s mad. Think about the urban cowboys. Where else are you going to see a guy going down the road on a horse to get a pizza? And just park it up and everything is as normal as day? It’s crazy. Or to go out, rob a car and then burn it out at night? Or cruising around on a scrambler? Where did these things come from? Everyone’s got this fascination with speed. Just getting on a bike and going fast. Look at Conor McGregor. He’s got these fast cars, these lovely brands. The first thing people say when they see all of it is, ‘I want that.’ Even on Facebook it’s all about flashing what you’ve got. Anything that has got wheels and can go fast, it’s loved. Or if it’s got four legs — a dog or horse, know what I mean? I like style but I think it’s more of an image thing rather than a fashion thing. It comes from looking at celebrities and a richer world that we aspire to be part of.
I’ve been questioned on whether I’m trying to put this image onto Tallaght. But I’m not trying to make it out as anything — as good or bad — I’m just trying to highlight what’s happening. I’m just documenting it. I think time stopped when it came to Tallaght. People act the same, dress the same, nothing ever changes. It’s just the same old thing. The same old things happen all the time. I don’t think it’s ever going to change. There’s stuff that has happened in the nineties and the eighties that are still happening today. I don’t even know how to describe it all sometimes.
My neighbours haven’t even seen my work. Some of my mates have but I haven’t really shown them all yet. I don’t think it’s finished yet to show them. It’s not ready. I don’t think it’s right to show them something unfinished. The guys that actually feature in my work will be coming to the show. I’m going to go try and do a real professional fashion shoot with two of them. I want to turn my estate into a fashion world. @eoinhaide
Focusing on conceptual design, the reaction of the user and lots of spikes. Product Design Alumna
Before I came to NCAD, I wanted to do paint. Then I did a portfolio course and all the way through it I was always on the fine art side of things but during the course I started to like design more. When it came to me deciding my specialisation, product design caught my interest as a mixture of both as it can be quite sculptural. It’s weird that I wanted to do fine art anyway, because I’ve always liked interior design. I’ve always been indecisive. I always had the influence, but never let it out until final year.
When I started out I was looking at texture. I wanted to do something that involved touching, because with products you want to handle them and use them. I was doing my thesis on the whole art vs. design thing, and I wanted to do the same in my project. My thesis was about looking at the crossover between art and design in furniture, so it was looking at designers who do hybrids. I got into looking at how people feel and react to things. I looked into fears, and how textures make us feel weird, like slime, and then it progressed onto the spikes. That’s when I started making spiky stuff. I started making mystery boxes with spikes in them. I made casts and made people put their hands inside and seeing that initial reaction was very interesting. At the same time, I was also interested in interiors and furniture, so I asked myself, ‘How can I bring these all together?’ Distorting Perceptions went from there. I wanted to make it discomforting to look at, but comfortable to be in. The idea is what you see isn’t exactly what you feel. It turns into this distorted visuality.
A lot of my work was research and experiments until March. Initially, I was looking at casting things that were hard. I had a resin that I made, and then I started covering it with soft stuff, so I was distorting the sharpness of it. I started initially with rigid things but then with the foam I found it was easy to make it look rigid but it was actually soft — and it’s fun to work with. It started with sponges, and then casting. Casting foam is really fun — it just expands, it’s great. Even during prototyping I was still researching and adding to it. Some people would say something completely different to what another person had said, so you have to rethink things. Because it’s conceptual everyone has their own opinion of it; it’s your interpretation. I wanted to create a place where people would be weirded out. I used pink to create a contrast as it’s such a soft colour. The spikes shouldn’t be comforting but they are. It’s the texture too. When something’s soft, people are just naturally comforted by it. You recognise textures and when you realise something is soft, you begin to be comforted. It’s part of playing with those emotions. I did want the pieces to be rigid though, and I wanted the user to adjust. I wanted them to move and find their own comfort in it so everyone would sit on them differently. The footrest was something for your feet to play with, and I made it so that it swayed, so it added to the edginess of it all.
There’s people like Tom Dixon who experiment with materials. There’s this mentality that everything must be made out of certain materials but if you experiment, you can create new things and everything becomes more sculptural. There’s room for more experimentation, absolutely. Looking back, I definitely learned a lot. I learned that maybe the way I did the project wasn’t perfect, but there’s always things you’d like to improve on. I had such fun making the work and enjoyed prototyping and that was important for me. It was more important that the idea came across more so than the execution of making the products themselves. I wanted it to be visually correct, same with the wording and statements I wrote. I spent a lot of time writing, and explaining it — writing paragraph after paragraph, figuring out how to explain it all. I got it and understood it in my head but then when I said it to someone they would be confused. I got asked a lot, ‘Why did you do it?’, and I would answer, ‘Because I wanted to.’
There was a while though where I was like, ‘Am I really doing the right thing?’ I didn’t know how people would react to my work, for me it was about the experience and about getting that reaction, it was about people going, ‘what the fuck?’ Because of my thesis, I was really interested in conceptual design. I was looking at people like Faye Toogood and Dunne & Raby. It’s all about the idea behind the work, once you know the idea you get it. Maybe that was what was wrong with me at the beginning of the project. I was uncertain, but I still went ahead with it because I am still designing a product, I’m just changing how we view it. It does fall more into conceptual design, so it was more visualculture type designers who looked at the process and research more than normal product designers. At the grad show, people were confused but once I explained it they were like ‘Ah!’ and then they would be more interested in it. That was the main thing: I just wanted people to be hesitant, and also just to start squishing the foam. When people did, it was really fun to look at their reactions. I wanted them to be strangely attracted to the whole thing.
It was also all about changing what you normally think of as a chair. Usually you sit on it without thinking about it, and then the idea was that with my work, ‘Is that safe to sit on?’ Basically, it was about looking at how you can change the perception of the user. The idea was that it looks uncomfortable, but when sat on or interacted with it is comforting in a strange way. I really wanted to make a rug as well, but it all got a little too much. What I wanted the bed to initially do was that when you sat on it, it would concave, and it would have been great if I could have gotten tonnes and tonnes of foam but it’s just so expensive! That’s the problem with being a student, it’s getting the funding. I had so much fun making that and getting people to test it was interesting because when they sat on it they didn’t want to get back up, ‘I’m actually kind of comfy now, I’m going to stay here.’ That’s what I liked about it — this daunting thing of a spike in your face. That for me was really good research.
Going forward, I’d love to be in that area of play, but it’s quite hard to do that. I do want a good retail job in a business where I can sell nice products, but for me it’s having that happy balance where I can play and do real stuff too. Product design for my year was really good. I couldn’t believe how good all the stuff turned out. When you’re working on your own project you don’t really know what other people are doing. It was great to see such diversity. It was nice to do something completely different. I enjoyed my first and second year but I wanted my final year to really keep me going and interested and luckily I found something I loved.
You definitely should exhibit a part of you in your work. Essentially, it will be in your portfolio. Does my wok have part of my personality? Am I a spiky person who likes to scare people? I don’t know! I suppose I like things that are fun and quirky, and maybe that’s my personality shining through. If you have a certain way of thinking about things you should go for it as you’ll really put your love into the project.
I’d like to go back and do a masters, what I’d do it in, I don’t know. I’d considered conceptual or contextual design, since my project was so centred on touch and the senses. Maybe textiles? I’ll definitely wait a while and see what the work environment is like. I’d also really like to get into textiles, like screen printing and learning how to work with fabric. It’s funny my head is just one thing after another, but that’s the fun of it. You learn a lot from your work. In retrospect, it was interesting to see how we can adjust ourselves to our environment, we don’t intentionally have preconceptions but we do — we assume my work would be spiky and hard but once we overcome that we realise what they really are. aliceevansdesign.wix.com/mysite @al.ce_designs
IN PLACE Reframing the way we
view disused urban space Interview — Nichol Gray
There’s maybe 1000 derelict spaces in Dublin city centre. It’s something like the park space of St Stephen’s Green x 7. It’s when you hear a figure like that and then you look around you realise they are everywhere. One of the original intentions of IN PLACE was just to get people to pay attention to the effect it has on you. It is part of who we are as Dubliners — these spaces are everywhere and we should acknowledge them more and maybe if your reaction to that is to be frustrated and upset, then good, channel that somewhere. The name IN PLACE came from the concept of place and space. Space is an academic idea of something that has no identity because nobody interacts with it, so if you go into a white gallery space it only becomes a space when somebody puts artwork in it because they’ve interacted with it. They’ve given you something to look at. It becomes a place by communities interacting with it. In Place came because when you say something is in place you assume it’s the subject of a natural rhythm or order. So if I said, ‘That’s all in place,’ you’d assume it’s taken care of. However In Place is all about interrupting the assumed order of our city’s vacant spaces. It’s to get people to realise it’s not in place, it’s actually not working and we should interrupt it.
Every city has these kinds of problems. I think in Dublin our issue is that we allow those spaces to be stagnant. In other cities, a landlord will incur a really high tax rate for sitting on a property and letting it become vacant or derelict and they will get a tax break if they allow a cultural organisation in. Here landlords don’t even have to register ownership of a building. So you can anonymously be sitting on derelict buildings. The schemes are still operating now. It first started in the nineties and it’s currently working around. Loads of little loopholes existed that used words that don’t really mean anything. The exact same things are happening all over again because these policy documents are actually really helpful for the people who are investing huge amounts of money.
Zoe Sheehy and I talked about how frustrating it was, particularly as people working within the arts, to know that arts organisations need these spaces and can make really valuable use of them with only minimal interaction. They really just need somewhere to go and grow or develop. She was in college with Jordan McQuaid and he felt the same. We talked about what we could actually do because I wanted to give a lot of energy to it. Reusing Dublin were one of the first groups that I contacted with IN PLACE. At the beginning I was just sending out loads of emails, and Philip was one of the people who rang me straight back and gave me loads of information. One of the huge growth spurts for the project was actually getting names of other people to call and speak to about it. A group I’ve been working with is called Connect the Dots. They spoke at both our events. They’re doing really valuable, almost academic work, whereas In Place is obviously very arts-driven. They host these dinners where they get squatters, council leaders, and they even tried to get NAMA in for a while. There would be architects, city planners, policy -makers; they get them all around the table and do workshops with ideas about accessing space. One of the first things that came from those workshops was that nobody knows. When you get everybody in a room, I thought ‘Great!’ — everybody’s in the same room so we’re actually going to find out who is in charge of these spaces. But the answer is no one. No one is actually in charge and obviously that does benefit somebody but they weren’t in that room.
So we’re going to sit down with Connect the Dots and Reusing Dublin who are mapping all the vacant spaces in Dublin and What If Dublin who also spoke at the exhibition. They did more artistic interventions a while ago. We’re all going to sit down and hopefully form the foundations for a lobby group for policy change while also continuing with what we’ve been doing. We’re going to keep up the artistic avenue and we’re going to pursue that as much as we possibly can because I think it’s such a great mediator for people because people don’t want to read policy documents. I went out and I asked these groups myself. It was really great that they came back and thought that In Place was valuable enough to meet and to work with us and to bring it forward. In Place needs a purpose. It’s not legitimate if you’re just pointing at something. You’ve got to do something as well. Don’t just sit on your hands afterwards, and think, ‘OK somebody else should jump in now that I’ve pointed out the problem’. So I think it’s really important to then try and actually do something — to put in the hours.
The Grangegorman squatters took over the Debtors’ Prison, which was one of the spaces we requested for In Place but were refused. Then about two weeks later the squatters broke the lock, went in and opened up the space and had a family day in there. I walked around the whole building and it’s fine. I walk past that part of the city all the time, and I’ve never wondered what was behind that big grey wall. Even for me, as someone who should be thinking about those things, and even as someone who’s trying to engage with those spaces and acknowledge them, I don’t see them all because they’re not on our radar as places in the city. So that’s the idea of getting people to stop thinking of them as non-places, but as spaces in our city, as shared public spaces. I think it's really important that we try to include the people who are living in the area and not just repeat exactly what we’re trying to criticise. I’m not sure what form that would take but it would be a matter of going to talk to people and finding out what they want to use these spaces for. I don’t think we’re legitimate at all if we don’t reach out to the people who are living in the areas.
In Barcelona they were giving three year leases to these groups for a space allowing them to develop. In a very fractional way, I suppose In Place kind of did this with the Eight Stories gig. They were a street graffiti campaign, but we were able to give them a space and the reaction to that gig was huge. I couldn’t believe the turnout for it. We more than sold out and it was such a good night but we never would have been able to engage with all those people or give a platform to Eight Stories if we didn’t have that space and that was all they needed. So it’s really interesting to see how much people really want to use the spaces and that they can be so valuable to small groups. Eight Stories out of that event made loads of connections because it made them visible. Before they were going out and spray painting things and re-pasting things but then it became four girls who are standing up speaking to a room full of people. Tara Street became a focal point and a symbol for all those vacant spaces. Just across the road is Apollo House and there’s the Tara House, so it’s super valuable — a diamond in the rough. Having that Tara Street space has completely altered everything we’re doing. Like what Eight Stories were doing, it put names and faces on the project. We created a space and we could open the door and be like ‘Come in!’ The space is so important and it keeps the conversation political because it’s actually illustrating the re-use of space for people.
At this stage what we’re doing has to be political. It is completely driven by politics. But I don’t think that has to be the case. The way it worked out with this project I think everyone who approached us to use the space had a highly political agenda. I think it’s just the nature of people reacting to their environments as well. Like the Repeal The 8th campaign which is gaining huge traction, people are angry about vacant spaces. People feel motivated to do something so maybe it’s drawn from people’s environments. We were initially going to have our exhibition in the Chocolate Factory which is something I was concerned about because gallery spaces by their nature are non-political. They’re kind of sterile and we were bringing all of this political artwork into a non-political space and asking people to engage with it. When we got to keep it in Tara Street it kept everyone focused on why we were doing it.
Collaboration / Open Call
We’ve had some really brilliant artists approach us wanting to collaborate so I want to focus on accommodating those people and making sure we have really impactful, publicly visible installations going out. That might be over a couple of months. It’s going to continue in two strands: one really arts-driven and keeping people engaged and a second giving people space to produce work and also forming that very loose lobby group with other parties who are interested. Those are the two cornerstones of the whole thing. We did the open call and we got about seventy responses and we chose six or so from that. It was really hard to choose because so many people were doing incredible things with vacant spaces and working with similar themes already. Because we worked as a group to choose people we got quite a diverse group of people. We covered such a broad spectrum: art, design and even closing with contemporary dance as a response to vacancy and the absence of structure.
I’m really happy we have the photobook to take away from it. I think it’s important because so many of the spaces weren’t places we could invite people into. So to have something tangible is great; you’re holding the proof that we did it and it illustrates exactly what we’re trying to do as well. Something I was really anxious about was that the meaning of the project would get lost, or it wouldn’t be clear or easy to relate to or understand why it was worth getting behind. The photobook documents it all really well. It was a labour of love for Eric Stynes and Christine O’Flynn. They did it in a really short space of time. The people who have come on board have changed it for the better so much. That was a great thing about working on a project with no budget, everyone was just working on it because they really care about it.
I’m really happy with how it’s developed with people being compelled by the project enough to come and give their energy to it. At the start it definitely was a few of us really just pushing it as much as we could and it took off. If nobody cared about it then it couldn’t go forward, but people do. I was surprised by how many people engaged with In Place. You have an idea in your own head when you’re just talking to a small group of people so it’s very hard to gauge how other people will react to it. I was so happy with the energy that came back into the project from other people and how at the start I was sending out loads of emails and then people started calling me and sending me emails. That was a really great thing and illustrated the potential of the project. Hopefully now we’re at a point where it will become a really worthwhile robust project in the future. www.inplacedublin.com @inplacedublin
My current painting practice has been very much influenced by my geopolitical origins. I was born in 1979, in the former Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic, then part of the Soviet Union, an era which has always fascinated me with its paradoxes and peculiarities.
Divulging geopolitical origins and the Soviet woman. Paint Alumna
Sources & Inspiration
Much of my imagery is directly taken from Soviet Estonia’s women’s magazine Soviet Woman. As Judith Butler says: ‘Masculine and feminine roles are not biologically fixed but socially constructed.’ Soviet Woman created images of femininity according to the communist ideology of work — women as hard working comrades of Soviet society. Sections of the magazine were dedicated to teaching women skills, that were considered useful, like cooking, health and beauty, and hand-crafting skills like crocheting, knitting, sewing, etc. It even included indispensable life skills like raising children. The source material I work from dates from 1955 to the 1980s; I usually select photographs which feature women hard at work in traditionally ‘masculine’ milieus like farms, factories and construction sites. I choose my references quickly, working from a gut instinct; then I convert the selected image into what I loosely describe as a ‘painting’. I abstract the imagery from the original photograph to create simplified shapes which emphasise the workers and the act of working, not the work being produced.
In these works, I seek to create a tension between the logic of ‘should’ and the logic of ‘play’. I try to use paint, not as it ‘should’ be used — a medium to be applied to a surface using specific tools — but as a form-able, tangible, almost sculptural medium ripe for manipulation. My paintings are collaged from dried layers of acrylic or household paint, which I manipulate at different stages of drying — by scraping, folding, cutting, drawing into and building up. My work is distinguished by a palpable use of surface textures cast as paint. I often manipulate the context of mass-produced materials and convert them into figurative artworks. I also use cosmetic items to make marks into paint. The paint in this way becomes the surface as well as the medium. Some of my paintings are built up by collaborating collage techniques and traditional handcraft, such as basket weaving, knitting and crocheting ( jobs that women were required to do, according to the social idea of femininity constructed by the magazine Soviet Woman). My biggest influence throughout my art practice is contemporary and traditional ceramics. That is the reason I use gold and silver in my works. In contemporary and traditional ceramics usage of silver and gold is often a must, but in painting usage of silver or gold is not that common.
B I also use mass-produced tools, considered traditionally feminine, like icing nozzles and hair combs to create my paintings. To give my work a threedimensional sculptural form, I make acetate structures by vacuum-forming traditionally considered feminine objects like combs, brushes, cosmetic items, polishers, files, toys etc. Then I fill these forms with paint and when paint has dried, I remove these sculptural paint objects from acetate structures and incorporate them into my paintings. I generally choose to hang the paintings further from the wall to emphasise their object-like format. www.artbyriin.wordpress.com @riin_kaljurand
c What is that? d It’s a toilet seat. c Interesting. d Is it for one of those baby toilets? No, what’s a baby toilet?! A … potty? c An Irish Potty, is that what that is? It could be like a … d … Like a frame for your face? Like a crown. You could make a mirror frame out of it. I like that colour. What was [our tutor] talking about, the tonality? c The tonality?! I wonder why they have bears on the actual seat, does that encourage the child to go to the toilet on their faces? d To encourage softness? I think if you have the opportunity to print something on a toilet seat you always should.
People + objects = conversation
c (Reads title) This is just what I wanted! d Smell it. You should always smell books. c (Smells book) No I’m not impressed by that. d I get a nice whiff off it but most of the glue smell is gone. I like that book size. c Oh it’s a book about NCAD! Is it!? Oh it’s doctoral research. Would you ever do a doctorate? d I would if I could because I think it would be gas trying to make people call me doctor. I think you can only do a doctorate in Visual Culture here? You’d be so smart. c I suppose if you do a doctorate it’s more the theory of it more so than the practical. I don’t know, I’m probably v| completely wrong and
d What do we think? c I’m really impressed by this. d This is one of my best pieces of work. c Wait, we can talk! d Hel-lo Co-nor. c Hello! Hello hello hello! d Boo! c What is it? d You put them in buildings I think. This is an insulated thing. I remember seeing a lot of these fuckers when my parents were building our house. c It’s fucking massive. It could be a fashion accessory, it could be a sculpture, it could be a communication device… d Catch us on the next episode! c Let’s try and move on. d I’m so glad we got this.
spreading false information. d Get a doctorate in being a mad cunt. c I’m only messing. The ‘mind the gap’ thing on trains is very strange. Even the phrase. d It always put the fear of God into me as a child. c It started in England and the Americans laughed at it because they never say, ‘mind’. I don’t know, useless fact. d What do they say then? Be aware? c Caution! The train is landing! d Jaysis. Every time the Americans don’t like something I feel more passionately about it. I like this blue paper. I feel like I’d be better at talking about things if I hadn’t been staring at my laptop all day. c Books are a kind of ordinary thing to us now.
c I’ve never used roll-on. d Oh really? c I can’t! My [armpit] hair, it’s impossible! d I’m sure it’s possible but now that you mention it I’m not sure. I’m sure that I’ve seen someone roll on to hair? c It would be kind of weird though. I just spray, I know it’s bad for the environment, but ... d I think you can get more friendly ones now. Is this one of the weird gendered ones? Oh, extreme power! c It’s actually mad how all the male products are ‘EXTREME! POWER!’ Black and red. d The male ones are normal tube shapes but the female ones are curved and stuff. Why does deodorant need a waist? c This shape is quite feminine. I’m not sure what makes it feminine though? d There are grips on it as well, which you really don’t need on a deodorant. My deodorant keeps slipping out of my manly hands! c It smells really nice though. d Yeah. It does smell nice. I love the ‘extreme power.’ And Adidas, why is it Adidas? c I think Lynx is just as good. Fuck the brands. d I feel like this is fake though, I don’t think Adidas have a line of deodorants? Developed with athletes? I feel like this needs more citations.
d It’s the man himself. c Oh it changes; it’s lenticular. There are two images. d How the fuck? Oh yeah, auld Jesus and young Jesus. The absolute pout on that baby. c It’s very cool. d I already had a headache. Catholic iconography reminds me of my granny’s old friends. They’d all have weird stuff like this in their house. It’s so kitsch and so serious at the same time. I remember when we were in school in sixth class and we were taught, ‘yeah Jesus wasn’t white lads,’ he was from Israel. He could be white, but it’s not very likely. Going to Catholic school was terrible but that was the most honest thing they told us. Sex education was real fucked up and they also taught us a woman is at her most womanly when she’s pregnant because that’s what she was put on this earth to do. It was really fucked up. They thought gay people were just paedophiles. Anyway. Sure you’ll have that. c Yeah. d It reminds me of one of those things on Facebook where they’re like, ‘like this if you smoke weed’ — psychedelic bro! c I wonder would the Church even approve of this? Would they say, ‘you can’t make lenticular images of Christ, that’s against the word of God!’ d I think you’re grand as long as you don’t kiss girls. I feel like most of the priests I know wouldn’t care about it. c It just kind of appeals. But it’s €3, who would actually own this? Who would buy it and put it up in their house? d I feel if you put that in MOMA it would suddenly look way cooler than it is. I feel like you’d see it at a house party when you end up in a weird part of their house. Do you ever get that, you’d just end up there? c Happens to me all the time! d I’m just going back to my teen years.
Jesus poster 61
c I love notebooks. Notebooks are fucking class. I know a lot of people don’t like them. Especially in first year, a lot of people didn’t like them and a lot of people still don’t like them. But, I literally think they’re everything. d Mine don’t make any sense. It’s just sentence fragments. c Yeah, but it helps. Even this, it’s just you talking to yourself. d On one page I just had ‘Bitch, what the fuck’, I can’t remember why. I find sometimes my notebooks are too coded for me to remember what I meant. c I’m so bad for making lists. And post-it notes. d Post-it notes are my kink. But then I don’t take them down for three months. Oh I follow him! Twitter is a terrifying place. I actually printed off loads of Twitter stuff for my last project because people say really fucked up stuff behind a screen. The mean reds! I love Breakfast At Tiffany’s. c Twitter is a great forum for conversation. And even the news. Like say when the Paris attacks happened, it was instant, you knew everything straight away. d I get all my news from Twitter. My mam is always like, ‘How do you know?’ c I never watch the news, I just go on Twitter. d Yeah, don’t have a TV either, so. c Same as me. d Also you’d have to sit down and watch it. Although sometimes it’s scary because they’re like, look at this thing Donald Trump just did and I’d find out another terrible thing. Everything has been going backwards very very quickly the last few days. c I suppose with Twitter as well, it’s just used by this small percentage of people, and I know there’s different opinions on it but it seems to me it’s very liberal anyway. In some ways anyway. d I get that. My circle would be very liberal anyway, because you follow people you know. It’s an echo chamber. When you delve into other parts it gets real fucked up real fast. Or any women’s posts, you know Louise O'Neill who wrote Asking For It? Some of her mentions are people threatening her for daring to be female and having an opinion. You’re right, it’s not a true measure. c You read tweets that are selected for you based on what you like, so you’re not going to get a real representation of what’s happening. It’s interesting. d Also it really feeds into that post-truth thing, that’s how fake news spreads so fast. It’s mad because a lot of people just read a headline and they’re like, ‘oh that’s grand that’s true.’ If you’re not good at debunking stuff like
that you kind of fall victim to it. Like the Liberal.ie! They posted so much fake news, and we all knew it was fake news for so long. c That’s the thing, when you don’t know a lot about a subject a lot of people still talk about it, especially in politics. But a lot of people would just say whatever the fuck they want and they might be wrong, even if it’s just their opinion, it must be informed. d Opinions can definitely be wrong. If it’s my opinion that the sky is orange it’s still fucking wrong. c But that’s fact, that’s not even opinion anymore. d Everyone has a few Facebook friends who are just numpties, I posted something once about Ireland’s treatment of women and this guy started arguing with me and I was just like, ‘well this is actually the truth’ and he was like, ‘awh fair enough I didn’t know that, I actually don’t know anything about women’s rights in Ireland’ and I was like, ‘THEN WHY WOULD YOU COMMENT?’ Or like the other day, I posted something about that Nazi getting punched. c I saw that! d Cleared my skin up. c He got punched again, I saw that on Twitter this morning. It’s always on Twitter, that’s where you see it. d This dude was like, ‘Awh Dearbhla I’m so ashamed that
you like this,’ and I was like, ‘I’m not going to let this dude call my friend the N word.’ c Don’t be passive about it, you have to be strong about it. d I don’t care, an opinion is you voted for Fine Gael I think they’re good and you voted Fianna Fáil or something else, their policies are almost the same but Nazis are like, ‘no let’s ethnically cleanse Europe.’ The same dude, he was like, ‘I don’t think Jews are people’ or whatever. That’s an opinion but it’s also terrible and you should get punched in the face. It’s not like everyone was really polite to the Nazis until they just stopped. c It can go too far that it’s like everyone has got an opinion, let’s respect that — the Nazis have got an opinion let’s respect that — but no, it has to stop somewhere. They’re fucking, agh … d I can respect the right that everyone can have an opinion but also if I said something really racist I wouldn’t want people to accept that, it doesn’t matter that it’s your fucking opinion. Especially because, well I can’t really comment on it because I’m white, but I have friends who suffer the consequences of people being allowed to be racist because it’s just an opinion. If it’s just a joke it feels like an attack. You should pick another thing, it’s your turn I just realised.
c Oh, a mirror! d Wild, I like it. That’s really pleasing for some reason. c Oh God, it’s so cheap. I thought this was a metal frame, then I touched it. d I don’t know what you’d buy that for. It reminds me of those jewellery stalls in markets. c Again though — who buys this stuff? If you don’t touch it it actually looks kind of well. But once you fucking touch it, you realise [that it’s plastic]. d I got recently loads of my furniture and bits for the house in a pound shop. I think it’s really kitschy. c There’s a charm about it. d Put that in Urban Outfitters. I love the Carpet Mills. I love the Liberties. Not to put Carpet Mills and the Liberties as one and the same, I just love the shops around here. c It’s mad that there’s a market for stuff like this, I’m always shocked. But again maybe they like it because they know it’s kitsch, they know what it is; it’s not like they’re confused about it, ‘Oh this is — d glam. c Glam! They know it’s not. d It’s just cute for what it is. I suppose it could be handy. I suppose sometimes you just want a cheap-ass mirror. c It’s doing its job. Maybe it doesn’t need a big fancy metal thing. d Or an art exhibition if you’re reflecting lights or whatever. c And you can carry it around really easily! d Do you want to pick something else, I feel like we spent too long talking about Nazis. Also I feel like I didn’t say anything intelligent. c It’s so hard to say things intelligently when you’re on the spot!
c It looks so cute, even though these things can kill people. d It represents an awful thing. Not to be overly-liberal about it. c I suppose it is like a garter thing. Is that what it’s called? And that would go around their leg? d Yeah. I feel like it wouldn’t fit anywhere else on someone’s body, well actually — oh no, that will not go over my head. (Puts on garter) You know yourself, when you’re out and about and you just need to — (Fires gun) c I understand.
d Is it a puzzle? c It turns into a thing that moves! d Transformers, robots in disguise! c Wait where’s its head? d Maybe you wind it up and it does something? This is about to get fucked up. It’s kind of spooky. c That's kind of weird. It looks like a hammerhead shark. d It’s just the little hands. c Oh fuck lads. d Oh shit. Is it going to move? c I don’t understand! I never played with these as a child. I’m going to leave it here, I’m scared. (Object flies across table) c I knew something like that would happen! d That was so weird and climatic! c There’s so much power in it! d It’s too powerful. deirdre It’s not always a dinosaur… c Oh, we have to figure it out. d It’s a fucking weapon. c I thought it was a grenade at first. d I wonder what it is when it’s not a dinosaur. c Is it even a dinosaur? d I don’t know, I just saw it was scaly and it had four limbs. c That’s dangerous for a child, is it not? d I don’t know, I suppose we had Beyblades. c Oh yeah. They're good.
d I remember the funniest time as a child was one day me and my friend Bradley got a fuck-load of onions and we spent the whole day throwing onions at cars. There’s nothing more satisfying than watching an onion burst off a BMW. Then his mam went mad because they were her onions. (Dinosaur spins around table) (Screams) (Marion Lynch enters and asks for silence) c Was that Marion Lynch? d That was my fault for screaming. I think you’re supposed to wind it up and let it fly off. lucas We didn’t figure out this part. d You’re definitely meant to do this in the bath. c Oh and it swims! d Or it just, I don’t know, doesn’t take off at that altitude. c Oh there's lights on it, that’s cool. (Lucas demonstrates dinosaur music spinning top) c Oh there’s music. d It’s savage! d Kids toys are gas. I don’t know what fucking kind of dinosaur that is but he looks well. c It’s just a ball. Oh it’s a globe, it’s the ball. (Pulls rubber duck out of bag) d Ayyy, it’s the boy. We can make a family now. Animal farm. c It’s weird that we know everything on this, all the countries. Maybe we don’t. But we do, we do. d That is mad. It’s Australia day today actually. Or should I say the murder of indigenous people day? c America is the same. d We’ll end This Morning with that; colonialism is bad, lads. I feel like you can print none of that. c I’m so unsure. I’m really worried.
c Oh the new one, I haven’t looked at this yet. I like how they put more interviews into each specialisation, because before it was just one person. It’s mad, I remember seeing my first one of these back in sixth year and I was just fascinated. I remember looking through it and reading every single one and they were all so cool. d Yeah. I remember looking at it being like, if I go there will I get cheekbones like that? It makes it look so glam. I love this college. People are always like, ‘awh it’s so dirty,’ but it’s just a bit of paint everywhere. c That’s part of the character. d It’s a real make and do. c Alumni interviews! It’s mad how old the college is. Like her, she was here. d She was graduated as long as I was alive! What does it say about Vis Comm? c Vis Comm! d You know the way when they’re like, All the famous people that went here’ — who’s your man that makes the hats? c Philip Treacy. d Philip Treacy, I love him, and I can’t remember his name. All these people that went here, I want to be that person some day.
c Same as me. We can do it, it’s so possible. d We can do it! Together we can form our ultimate form. c There’s Bernard! d He is stun. We’re all thinking it. c Great photo. d [Our tutor] would punch me in the face if I did that [kind of artwork]. c It works. d Sometimes it works but people are like ‘Fuck you, it doesn’t work.’ c It is mostly opinion and that’s what’s hard. When I came from school I was really academic and moving to here, there’s no right or wrong. But in school there is. d But here there still is a wrong answer. In my first semester I was absolutely dreadful. c But it could be wrong in that the work isn’t there, but if you do the work it can’t ever be wrong. d I suppose I was just trying to get into Vis Comm, trying to get grades. Fine Art stressed me out. I wanted to do law as well. c Law! I do miss Fine Art though. I miss the openness. I love Vis Comm, but there are rules. d Yeah, you’re very artistic. c We’re all fucking artistic! We better be artistic. d I found Fine Art to be super closed, because I couldn’t do anything right. c But that’s the thing, there is no right. d But I was trying to pass. And then I came into Design and they were like yeah do whatever you want as long as you have a reason for doing it. c In Vis Comm, there is an element of right and wrong because it must be rationalised and I think that makes it stronger. But with Fine Art I think it’s nice that you don’t need to rationalise everything and that kind of propels the work somewhere different. If you’re making work just because it looks nice, maybe that’s not a good enough reason, but sometimes it is — maybe the work just is beautiful. But in Vis Comm you have to really explain.
I like that though. d It doesn’t even have to be a good reason it just has to be a reason. Like that thing we had to critique at the beginning of the year, I typed it out in Wing Dings. I was like a stupid font for a stupid thing. c David Carson actually did that in the nineties I think. d He copied me. c He interviewed this guy and the interview was really boring and he made the interview entirely in Wing Dings and the guy got really offended but he didn’t change it and it went to print and everyone laughed at him. d That’s what this interview will be printed in.
Print, paint, instagram and irony. Print — Second Year
A few of them are about being on phones. Sam’s on his phone in the background. That’s why he’s kind of greyed out — the way he would be if he was on his phone in a social situation. Same as the one with the girls. The other two people are on their phones and she’s in colour. She’s the only one there in the moment. This work is about people’s obsession with their phones and how they can be present, like we are now but if I was on my phone I wouldn’t be. That’s what I was going for. I’m not against it. I do it all the time. I’m just highlighting it. It’s documenting my circle of friends. They all come from photos I’ve taken and I render them on Photoshop. I leave out things, maybe take out the background, make a 2D background and just focus on the people.
Sometimes itâ€™s doing work just to put on Instagram. I stitched into my hand instead of drawing it because it looks cooler. You put it up so people validate your work through likes or whatever. 71
B I know I’m guilty of it too. Sometimes I see the photo of the work on Instagram as the finished piece rather than the actual painting. I’ll look at that more. If I want to look back at it, I wouldn’t take out the canvas I’d just look at Instagram. It’s immediate, all the time, it’s on your phone. You can see what people think immediately. If you put it on Instagram you can see if people like it or not. Some of it is self-deprecating. I like using me as a subject as well because it’s easier.
I do actually love some of [David Hockney’s] work. He draws pools a lot so I decided to put him in one for a change. f
In first year I didn’t paint at all really. I only started it during second year. I kind of grew tired of print. It’s kind of boring and the process takes forever. I don’t know which style to stick with. It depends on what pen I have, how much detail I want to put into it. My favourite is probably painting right now. It changes weekly though. Last week it wasn’t working out so for a while I hated painting. I wasn’t into using notebooks a lot. Usually I’d just try figure it out in my head. If I was going to do it, I was going to do a finished piece rather than sketch it out. But now I’ve started working it out in a notebook.
I was watching Picasso videos, doing single line drawings and I tried doing one of a flamingo. So I started drawing them everywhere. I just like the imagery of them [Cowboys]. The hats, the voices. It’s something I used to always watch as a kid, really old Westerns. It kind of stuck with me and now it’s coming into my art. I like some of it. Usually after a few weeks of doing a painting I’ll start to dislike it and only see flaws in it. That's why I do just keep doing more work. Some of it I can look back on and appreciate.
I’ve always been ‘pretty arty’. Even in primary school, that’s when I can first remember people telling me I’m good at it. So I was like, I’ll keep this up. This works. I came straight from school. I wasn’t too pushed on going to art college. I didn’t really know what else to do. I was kind of confident I’d do the portfolio and get in and it would be good fun as well as hard work. Now I don’t really want to leave. During first year I only really liked drawing, not painting or sculpture or anything. So Print seemed like the natural one to do. I enjoyed doing dry points. That’s a family gathering, a Christmas card. x That was when I just turned 20, kind of leaving my youth behind. @seventhheavenrip
How studying paint doesn’t always involve using paint
We live in a world of maximalism. People just buy things and buy things and we just have these things in our houses — patterns, mismatches — and they don’t even go together. My work echoes the world of domestic interiors. I used everyday patterns and materials to play around with colour and composition. It started in third year where I was just collecting things and I was really influenced by the things around me. That’s the main influence: everyday stuff. In paint you’ve to do a project where you have to bring everything that you’re interested in and then narrow it into headings. It started there. I remember finding Fergus Feely, an Irish artist, and that was what I wanted to do. I wanted the same kind of vibe.
When I started I was really into process. I’d do really process-driven work with paint and cement, and then I was gathering materials, different wallpapers and I started stitching them together to see what would happen — how did they work together, how did they look together? Then I used to do drawings of the things that I made, but I started using the things I was making as the pieces. It was a lot of stitching and stuff like that rather than actually drawing. I would like the idea of having one thing as something and a copy of that as another thing. If you have so much of one thing, it’s another thing. The group is something in itself.
I think in theory I like my work to be really neat, but sometimes it doesn’t work out like that. If you stitch something really small together and it rips it becomes a part of it and you can’t really help that, you have to accept it.
[The aesthetic is] from the stuff we collect in our homes, that’s where it came from. It kind of reminds me of being in my nanas house, and what I was used to. It’s everyday things. It’s making something mundane important. That’s how I got the dots one [patterned notebook] because I used to do a lot of patterns, and it made the most sense. I was doing stuff with multiples of things, representation and abstraction — the original and the copy — can they do the same thing? That’s where the tables came from. It’s a suggestion of a table rather than an actual table. I made some more structural ones towards the end. If I were to push it now, I would be making more structural things rather than work on the wall. I’d call them tables but they’re not really functioning tables.
It never really came into my head that I wasn’t painting. A lot of people in paint, in my year especially, didn’t really paint. It’s funny, there were a lot of videos which is good. The course is painting but it’s not just about paint. It can be stretched a lot further than actually just doing a painting. The size came from the stuff that I had, it was always there. That was one thing they were always saying to me: ‘You should try to push it and make it bigger’. I remember making frames that were bigger and I never used them, it wasn’t working. Textiles was my second choice after paint. If I went back I could still probably have done that but ultimately I would have wanted to be in paint. I feel like I could have been doing the same work in textiles.
At the end, in fourth year, there were so many of us and I didnâ€™t know a lot of the people around me, but I think it kind of just made me work more. We had a really good class. If it had been all of us together, it would have been different. In fourth year everyone is very driven. There were definitely people in my class who I looked up to and thought they did such nice work. What I think is important is that youâ€™re making work that you want to make and that you like in the end. aliceevansdesign.wix.com/mysite @al.ce_designs
Turning back time and
the importance of research
Refuses to be labeled — Core Tutor
I started here in the late eighties, at a time when it wasn’t Core. It was called Foundation and I was requested to come and do some part time teaching. I was asked to do two months work which then became thirty years. Prior to that, I did a million different things. I restructured the first year in Crawford School of Art by bringing in a tutorial-based ideas system where they were mostly skills-based before that and little segmented classes so it was more of a cohesive way of working. It was great to be able to come to NCAD, where I was immediately put into working with Joe Wilson along with Mick O’Dea. So NCAD was very fertile ground for the particular kind of ideas that we all seemed to have at a particular moment in time.
I started mostly within the field of advertising, which might be surprising — or maybe not — one of the things with advertising is that it’s very much an ideasbased discipline, although the selling side of it never interested me much. In fact I ended up quite jaded with the whole process of advertising. I don’t have a specialisation. If somebody says to me well, ‘What kind of work do you do?’ I do all different kinds of work. If people want to say ‘I’m a jewellery maker, I make jewellery’, that’s fine. I don’t object to that but I don’t choose to wear those labels but I found that the work here enabled me to deliver work without labels. All the time that I’ve been here I’ve never written or produced a project that is associated with a particular discipline. I’m not saying I can’t do it, I don’t choose to do it and I’m not put into a position of doing it.
The origins of it came into being about eight years ago, during a time when a previous director, Colm O’Briain, was here. Myself and another colleague were put in charge of developing ideas towards what people would do as they’re coming in and what they would do as they're leaving first year — so before and after. I focused on the before part. What should students be able to do before they get into NCAD? If you’ve got to decide who gets in and who doesn’t, what are you going to look for in their work? So that process was in my head. If you think ‘here’s all these things that students should have’, how do you determine whether they have them or not and if they’re that important — can you get them to have them, these attributes? In other words, if you say to people, ‘Everybody should be able to do work like this,’ well then my attitude is to show them how to work like that. I was also very aware that throughout Ireland there were students or candidates who were in a more privileged position than others, in terms of the amount of ideas they were exposed to. There was bad teaching going on. But there were good students at the bad schools who weren’t being challenged and so there was an inequality. One of the founding principles of the folio brief is that it would provide equality so everybody gets to do the same.
I tried to develop a set of tasks that expose people to things like research, and to find out about things and where they were in charge of the research process. There is a logic and a framework to it that doesn’t have to be reinvented every year, it just has to have tasks rewritten every year. The structure that was developed was by me, mostly, though I worked with a couple of other people. I write most of Section C every year, and I enjoy writing it every year. I can seriously tell you there isn’t anything I’ve ever put in there that I thought I would hate to try. It doesn’t make sense to say to anybody, ‘here’s what I think you should do, thank God I don’t have to do it.’ That’s not right. Obviously if people have particular skills there’s room to show those but it’s not assessed on a skill-base because skills can be acquired over time. It’s kind of a mixture to strike that balance because some people are very skilled and they can show that but I just don’t think that’s enough in a contemporary world. I think you have to be more versatile than that. I can do nothing about the fact that people will be going towards departments. I just try to keep them as versatile as possible. To students who would be going towards fashion I would say to not see fashion as being all fabric-based work — you can make fashion out of wood or metal and I show them examples.
My most recent piece is one I had in EVA last year, it’s Ireland’s biennale contemporary art show. I tried to alter the time in Ireland, it’s part of a series of work that I have. They’re Dubious Proposals of an Easily Deniable Nature. What’s the most unlikely thing you could do? Changing the time is pretty unlikely. It was a piece of work that could only exist at an exact second in time, beyond that it didn't make sense and before that it didn’t make sense. It was the idea of creating a piece of work that is now and now is no longer because the time has passed. There was a book also, Chloe Brennan did the binding and Mark Reilly did the illustrations. I have an idea stream where I post work up anonymously onto a site called the Halfbakery and you won’t find my name anywhere. I choose not to have my name anywhere. It’s the opposite of being egotistical I suppose, the work is there — the work stands on its own. The fact that I did it in some respects actually doesn't matter. It’s got a life of its own now.
I’m interested in three dimensional work. I’m interested in topics like wearing — what does wearing mean? I say things to students like, ’What’s colour?’ They’re hard things to define. In unravelling a definition that you get interesting work. In 1990 I wrote a project for a student called the Hybrid Project and it was about taking qualities and using it infiltrated down into the folio brief and I see it being taught in secondary schools and that makes me happy. I’m not saying I invented it, for me it was something that was always there. It’s something from here and something from there and then something unexpected that happens when they meet up. It's like putting a handle on something that didn’t have a handle before and you can carry it to where you couldn’t before. I say to people ‘do the obvious too’, that’s fine. Then you get beyond that. And I believe in multiples. Do five of that. Do another five. ‘I can’t think of another five’ but you will. It’s a good philosophy to have in your work, it works. I believe in giving students a strategy, it won’t let you down.
I don’t [detach my work in college from my personal work]. I see one as informing the other and I try to employ the same methods that I teach the students. Say with the modified trousers [brief], the first thing I’ll do is hold up the trousers and say how do you know that’s a pair of trousers? How do you know something is something? What are its qualities and what can you do with them? Can you turn them inside out, upside down? If you add something to them what happens? It’s all that thinking, I do it all the time. I kind of like solving problems or being with problems or inventing problems. I’ve always liked solving problems. I have no idea where it came from. My father left school when he was about twelve but he was a very smart man. He was very inventive so I might have got it from him. It’s something I think you can learn; there are strategies to invention.
I can’t stand long projects. We used to do projects that were three months, and that was long enough for me so I knew I had to make it really personal to be able to commit to something wholeheartedly. I struggled for ages always thinking ‘I want to be in fine art and I can’t stand design’. I was being so pretentious. A lot of my friends are fine artists, so I always found myself sitting and talking to them. I always felt design was so impersonal — what a big statement — but from what we are programmed to think and the jobs accessible after college there is so little scope and possibilities to do your own thing straight after. This scared me, so I was fighting against what I was best at. For textiles in Dublin you have Dunnes or Penneys as major prospects and that doesn’t appeal to me just yet. I was missing my family in fourth year — I didn’t know where I was going, and I found that kind of wobbly — so the project had to be personal so I’d feel connected to home and also as a last hurrah with originality before applying to businesses. That was where PLAY(Set) formed. It was based on video games and board games played with my sisters, so to me it was all about placement of colour relating to these experiences.
Emma Whelan Discovering the essence of play Steambox Residency TSD Alumna
I first started with playdough. I wanted to concentrate on it and how it changed, being squished and merged with other qualities. I got loads of those red dot stickers, and I just stuck them on everything. I’d stick them on balsa wood and shove it all into the playdough. I’d have this composition of spots and colour and wood. I struggled with mixing printing paste colours in the studio, the primary ones are the block colours premade so I chose to not mix any at first, saving time and also resorting to child-like intuition where primary colours are your go-to when filling in shape. I was jumping a step and being cheeky but it fit and it made sense. It was so fast and adding a contrasting colour was easier to create a palette. If you add a colour to a primary set, it will always look odd even if it’s a corresponding complementary colour. It would always stand out. That’s why I added the pink. I loved the girly-ness of it.
I wanted to do 3D shapes because I wanted my project to be fun and visual in the sense that every design had multiple visual layers and feels. I’m aware a lot of my stuff is quite on trend, like Dusen Dusen’s — those block shapes and the squiggles — so adding 3D shapes complemented the trends with also showing something a little extra. A lot of work in paint is going through that as well, the shapes and layers and compositions. Everything at the moment is composition. I wanted really big scale things. I imagined my degree show to be this big hanging piece, and then we got our spaces and we couldn't do anything like that, which was frustrating, but I wanted massive pieces and still imagine PLAY(Set) having the space it deserves. It deserved this crazy thing. People would be saying, ‘That’s ridiculous’. Some people would hate it and some people would love it. I think the biggest piece within PLAY(Set) is like four meters long, which is still small, but is big in textiles in NCAD. Block colour and scale were very important to me as to help project this childlike sensibility. I made the chairs also within PLAY(Set). Multidisciplinary! My dad loves making stuff as well, so we bonded over making the chairs. I think the project was a loop. It was like a full circle, the whole thing was about childhood, and I went home and made these things with the guidance of my dad. There was the pride of being at home and then showing my mum what I had achieved. It was about learning new skills and getting stuck in. In college you don’t have a lot of that, there’s always an eye on you. There’s always someone telling you what to do. This can be great to push you but for someone like me who’s a goodie-two-shoes it’s difficult to do what I really want and to get the marks I always desired while doing something tutors don’t see as relevant.
I’m such a sucker for lines and everything being perfect, so the satisfaction throughout fourth year was getting stuff on-point. I’d have to do things by eye with the big pieces. Getting stuff that looked so professional in the end was so yum. As a kid, I always wanted that look, the professionalism. Everything you do is novice and to achieve a professional look was important for me to prove to my parents, something hearty enough that they would like. Just to prove it to them and myself. Even though they’ve always been really supportive of me. I feel my notebooks are really put together, almost pure aesthetic. I do illustrations for Hallmark, and in my notebook for PLAY(Set), it was just all colourblocking and flat. But I love drawing too. I draw pigeons, and really silly things. Hallmark gave me a twelve-month freelance contract, after doing a placement there in the summer. I had that separate which was grounding. PLAY(Set) was a simple aesthetic, making things and being free, and Hallmark was almost like homework. Even though I love drawing, it was like a job — well, it was my job! But that was still fun.
I definitely struggled a lot last year with trying to get my subject matter across to the tutors. Sometimes, they didn’t understand where I was coming from, and I struggled with explaining myself and trying to prove my work. I’m a bit of an awkward prawn. But proving my work definitely made it stronger as I understood it better myself. The start was tough, but in the end it worked. Olga is such an inspiration for me. She understands contemporary design and can see everyone’s individual style. I felt like I had my whole project done in the first three months, and my tutors were telling me to push it, and I kept asking myself what could I do? So I started doing digital work, in Illustrator because we primarily use Photoshop in textiles so I told myself for industry I’d need to learn Illustrator.
Collaboration I moved onto fur mid way through PLAY(Set). I saw it in a shop one day and I was like, ‘I have to screen print on that!’ It was blue fur, and I’ve never gotten so excited about something before. That excitement I knew had to be in my project, the childhood excitement. What made it fun was I had to screen it with the help of a few people. The fur was so big and I couldn’t stick it down myself, so I had to get my friends to hold it down. It was a team effort and I loved that short group effort, I loved that they were getting excited by it and I knew if they were excited by it, it would resonate through the work. I like ‘vibing’ off people when talking about art and design. I get inspired by what we talk about and people personal likes and dislikes. I’d look at colours with my friends and put objects together on the table and they’d be like, ‘Look at my orange jacket with that!’ and we would get so ridiculous about colour but we’d be there for an hour like, ‘That’s a brilliant colour composition!’ sounds cringe but that enthusiasm is what you need — the playfulness and honesty of people who are willing to tell you something looks yuck.
Definitely only collaborate with someone you want to collaborate with. As James stressed to me don’t do it just for the sake of it. You can be fussy, even at the early stages. Anyone will collaborate with you if you do all the work and they don’t. You need someone to be your equal. Like any good relationship.
Right before I came out of NCAD, I got shortlisted for The Future Makers Award, and then shortlisted for the SDC Colour Competition. This gave me a little confidence to go to a few interviews. I learned that my stuff was just not commercial enough, and people seem to be put off by it, so I got frustrated. I didn’t tick all the boxes, but I knew how to do the job and could learn with some guidance. After getting rejected a few times I was a bit wobbly, I felt massively burnt out, it was too soon to be trying so hard. I needed a better portfolio and a better outlook. So I started making pots! There’s only so much you can tell yourself to keep going, that it’s fine, before you get frustrated. I kind of made pots as some form of creative therapy.
I got a job as a barista. It hit me really hard. It was nothing about class or anything like that just I felt my confidence had left me and I was working my bum off for people in a place that sells textiles and coffee. I just got good at latte art to make myself feel a little better. I’m looking at stuff by a textile designer and I’m selling coffee, it’s kind of like, ‘what am I doing?’, but it’s an income and it will get me to where I want to be. It really put things into perspective. The plan now is to organise my brain — to apply for internships that will without sounding cliché give me the stepping-stones to a dreamy profession that I could be happy in, in many years time. You have to start somewhere. That’s the main thing, just planning where I wanna go. And getting excited by it all again. I just got my own studio in Steambox and I am already getting a spark back and I feel stupidly happy-excited at the idea of creating a mini-brand for myself. 99 PLAY(Set) is definitely not finished. If it lends itself to a Masters, I’d love to do industrial design in London. I’d love to make a product that could help people within their daily lives. I feel like PLAY(Set) lends itself to special needs kids — the sensory element. If pushed, Play(Set) would be so perfect for kids. I want to create things that have a clear aesthetic but are also super functional. I think leaving NCAD you need to relax. You have to jump once you’re happy and ready. Go at your own pace though. And remember that you did learn such skills within those years amongst laughing with your friends. I never want to lose my excitement for design. I bloody love design. www.emmaelliot.com @e___w_____
Dara Kenny & Fine Art Paint Alumnus
Sophia Vigne Welsh Fine Art Media Alumna
Spray-painting, mask-making and
Getting into Art
influencing each other’s artistic practice
s I was really into art when I was very young. I drew a lot but I actually hated painting. When I finished school I did a portfolio course for three or four months and I didn’t really like it at all but it got me into photography. After that, I worked for a year, did an acting course for a year, did a fashion course for a year. It was actually fashion that got me back into art again. I was doing a lot more photography and doing more drawing and making and then I thought maybe I wanted to pursue that. d I just knew I always wanted to do art. From Junior Infants, even in play school I loved the sand pit and making things — you know the colour blocks that help you count, I really liked the colours of those.
d In secondary school, I drew on everything. I didn’t even know I was doing graffiti, I was just drawing on tables and getting in trouble in class for drawing. Then in transition year a guy came to the school who did graffiti, that made me start using spray paint and markers. It was only when I got to NCAD that I started using it in my work. I did an animation course after fifth year and I thought that I wanted to do animation but I wasn’t that good at it. Then I did a course over sixth year in Gorey, just one evening a week just to get me a portfolio to get into a portfolio course to get into NCAD. Then I did a year in BIFE (Bray Institute of Further Education), a portfolio course. BIFE allowed me to start experimenting. I was only comfortable using paint and pens and that made me a little more loose, using ink droppers and painting with random things, not brushes. A huge influence is graffiti and skating, and that type of subculture. I’ve been doing graffiti for eight years and two days, since the eighth of December 2008. I remember that whole day. It’s the only date I can remember.
Choosing Paint / Media
s I had it in my head that eventually I wanted to do photography in IADT, but then I met Dara. He brought me up to NCAD to one of the balls and another time just to have a look around. I had a bit of a thing in my head about . I didn’t have a great impression of it, but when I got there I realised I couldn’t have been more wrong. I worked in retail for that year but I was also working on my portfolio at home and I decided to try and get straight into second year media. It was mainly photography I was doing but I had started to do a bit of graffiti with Dara. I loved using spraypaint and so that got me into experimenting with painting. Then in second year I just messed around, that was a really nice year because you sort of had the freedom to do what you wanted without the pressure of final year. Even though my whole final year was photography-based I was painting the whole time along side of that. It was my way of relaxing, my escape, whereas the project that I showed at the degree show was a much more stressful process and more concrete conceptually. d I was open [to choosing a discipline]. I really enjoy printing and I enjoyed sculpture. I knew that if I did sculpture I’d still probably paint anyway. But paint was more what I was looking for and even if it wasn’t, I knew I could do something else in that.
Style d I don’t know if what I have is really a style. It’s a collection of all the things I’ve learned over the last couple of years. It’s really how I painted mixed with how I learned to paint loosely in Bray, mixed with graffiti. It was probably second or third year that I was doing drips and stuff, which is obviously coming from graffiti but I think the style was a collection of learning from all my experiences. If I woke up in the morning and wanted to paint a landscape, I could do it but I wouldn’t get anything from it. I realised, probably in fourth year, that I wasn’t doing it to please anyone but myself. I probably should have learned that sooner but it was fourth year I think I was most comfortable making my own work for me and if people were happy with it, cool, and if they wanted to buy it, cool, but at the end of the day it was just for me.
s For me, a lot of the time the words [in my work] come from music. It might be lyrics or something that might be in my head during the day or something that I’ve overheard. Hip Hop is probably one of my biggest influences. That’s what I listen to the most when I’m painting, although I’ve started listening to a lot of Jazz now, sometimes it’s nice to take a break from lyrics. There’s definitely not a linear narrative in any of my work. It’s really just things I thought of during the day, or quite often it’s things that made me angry — and a way to express that. d It’s kind of the same for me. I think how we make work is quite different but the text is probably similar. Mine comes from music as well, or a tiny thing coming from a social context. It’s the little things that stay in my mind. The text could come from a week ago, but then in that moment it seems relevant and that’s why it works.
s I have a notebook and I doodle and write down bits of text and say, ‘OK I want to make a painting from this,’ but when I’m actually painting it will often end up very different from any idea I had. Usually I’ll start with a couple of colours and bigger shapes and then try and bring in some of the text that I had in mind. I find that when I plan a painting it doesn’t go well. I think my best paintings are the ones that I just let happen. d It’s easier to accept a work when it’s not planned, because you don’t have those expectations. Some of my favourite work might have only taken a little while to make. Of the work I sold during the degree show — not that it means anything to the work — the painting of some of the pieces could have taken minutes to do, so I don’t think there’s a value on how much you work a piece as long as it’s something that you’re happy with. s That big painting probably took two weeks, some days I might have made a tiny mark. Painting's still so new to me that I really don’t feel like I know what I’m doing with it yet but I love it and want to keep developing my work.
d I’ll work on a bunch of paintings at once, that’s why with the colour palette you see similar bits and pieces going into it. The work is the work and should be able to speak for itself. A work should have everything in it that you can understand from it, and obviously everyone will have different interpretations of it, but that’s better than making a piece and telling people what it’s meant to be. What’s the point if all you want is your exact idea to be felt? It’s not how I work. I appreciate work that’s open to dialogue and open for people to interpret; like with the masks, it’s giving the viewer the chance to properly engage with — it’s not just one person’s understanding. When you’re opening up a dialogue, that’s when art is most powerful and that’s why we need it.
d I had made one for the Irish Decompression, which is the Irish Burning Man. I just made it for fun and I wore it and I felt great. I brought it in and one of the tutors told me I should run with it because there were ideas of masking in my work. It kind of goes back to graffiti. You’re applying and removing and changing and whatever. So I started making masks, and making more and more. I think I maybe had thirty or forty different pieces. I really enjoyed making them. It was nice to take a break away from it and going back to painting after. It gives you a lot more understanding of how to make work; you’re thinking in a different way than just normal painting, you’re thinking what it might be from the inside or adding different pieces. I wore them a lot while I was in the studio and I liked the idea of making work after that, with a kind of residue of the mask on my actions but I never really wore them much while I was painting. I like live performances, like the live-painting I did for the show. I had done graffiti in front of people before but I’d never done art — I know, what’s graffiti and what’s art, but that was really fun to do. It was something I was nervous about but after doing it, it was such a relief, I’d definitely do it again.
Influencing Each Other
s I think you can’t help it, we lived with each other in the last year of college and you can’t help be influenced by each other — you take in what you’re around. d We’d both be up in each other’s studios a lot, so you do take a bit of that back. The way both of us make work is that it’s our everyday experiences, it’s not deciding on a theme to work with; it’s allowing everything that you take in to become a piece of work. Just from looking at a glance you can say, ‘Oh yeah they look the same,’ but if you look a bit more into them they are quite different. s Seeing how Dara worked allowed me to loosen up quite a lot. I had a very set idea of what a painter should do and how they should be before I started messing around. I think seeing him gave me a bit of confidence to just go for it. I used to be so into drawing when I was younger, I was so particular and drawing things super-realistically. When I first started to paint in school I couldn’t get things to look how they actually looked and it frustrated me so much. I hated it and decided that it wasn’t for me; I had no interest. Now, through graffiti it’s become about the colours and the shapes. Doing graffiti and using spray paint definitely gave me much more confidence with how to approach painting a piece. I think that’s a lot to do with the physicality of graffiti and the big movements you’re making while painting that way.
B d If you look through our notebooks you can see there’s a very different approach. That’s probably where the most difference is, in the preliminary work. Sophia’s a really talented photographer as well, you’re into painting and photography. s If anyone was to ask me, I’d say I’m a photographer and I paint as well; photography is what I’m most confident in. I don’t wish that I’d done anything differently in final year but I wish I had more time to experiment and not have been so concerned with producing one really good final project. With painting it’s something I’m doing just for myself, it’s a release. But with photography I’m interacting with people sometimes on a very personal level which is so rewarding but can also be quite emotionally draining. It’s a different kind of energy. I’ve made clothes too. At the start of third year I had this idea that I wanted to make school uniforms. I did buy a couple of tracksuits and I was painting on t-shirts and making kind of wearable paintings. Even though I studied fashion for a year in Sallynoggin I knew I never really wanted to get into the fashion industry, the clothes I was making were more wearable DIY art. There’s a lot you can do with a tracksuit, they’re accessible to everyone no matter where you’re from but depending on what you put on it’s going to give out a different message. I had a few installation pieces and video pieces. I was doing string installations in second year and one in third year when we did the 5 + PHIFE exhibition in the old A4 Art.
d You were saying you get on well at the start of the painting whereas it’s more towards the end of the painting that I enjoy. It’s a process that should almost be perfect for us to work together, we just haven’t had the opportunity to do it. I do really like Sophia’s work. There are some pieces that I really like and there are some that I’d love to work on top of. s I think for me, maybe it’s from doing so much photography I really like the composition so with the start of the painting I’ll make really big shapes and I’ll be happy with the first layer but then when I go on that’s probably when I start to overthink things. I think when he started making the masks — I always liked what he was doing — but that was when I was like, ‘Wow he’s making really great art,’ and when you did that big painting on the vinyl blind, that was the first time I was like, ‘whoa, he’s an amazing painter.’ I think he really found himself with that piece and it went from there. Colour-wise, sometimes you’ll do pieces that are quite dark and that’s not my style but I think it makes me see a side of him that I wouldn’t see that often, but if you were to give me that piece I’d make it so different.
d Yeah, she wouldn’t have the black and the heavy stuff. s Yeah, I use a lot of white in my work and layer over other colours with white a lot. d I think Sophia’s probably a bit more delicate, mine is a bit … it’s not angrier but how I make it is sometimes a bit more rough. s Yeah, even though a lot of my stuff looks quite messy I’m actually quite particular about certain lines. I think I work in quite a delicate way. For that big painting, I was angry when I started but when I got into doing the smaller sections of it I had a bit more of a delicate touch. d Yeah, mine is a bit more quick — just act now and think about it afterwards. s But yes I like his work. d I like hers too.
s I think when I got into painting last year I realised that there really is no point in comparing myself. When I was in second year I was very aware that I had just gone straight into second year and not done Core, and I used to constantly compare myself to Dara and to other people in the college and that made me really insecure about my work. I got over that in final year and was starting to get good feedback about my painting as well as my photographs so that gave me more confidence. d I’m the same. I find it really weird when people make art and they say, ‘I hate that.’ You hear it quite a bit from people, ‘I really don’t like this.’ When I make work I’m quite confident, I don’t know if you can see that in the work but every now and again I doubt myself. Most of the time I’m quite sure and I know I’m going to make a piece and eventually it’s going to get there and if it doesn’t I put it away and I can work on it in a while. I think it is really important to value the work that you’re making.
Understanding the work
s That’s something I’m learnt from seeing how Dara works. I think when I was younger I wouldn’t have said I was a perfectionist but I definitely was and it held me back a lot when it came to expressing myself creatively. Seeing how Dara works has made me a lot more confident in trying new ways of working. If you don’t like something throw it out and start again instead of constantly trying to get something perfect. That has definitely helped me. I don’t think I would have gotten through college if I hadn’t developed that attitude.
d If you see the process, you might [understand], but both of our pieces are open. It was only in fourth year that I started to put titles on my work that give you a bit more than the untitled painting. s I think if you try to understand our work you’ll give yourself a headache, because some of the time we don’t even know ourselves. d Sometimes people come up and are like, ‘What does that mean?’ And I’d say, ‘I don’t really know but it looks nice.
s When I’m painting I’m making shapes and colours and trying to find a balance between these. It isn’t specifically about anything other than the immediate. It’s a release and some kind of open stream of consciousness. d The last four years haven’t been four years of learning how to paint, for me it’s been painting enough to gain the confidence in the movements that you make while painting. I haven’t become a better painter — I understand more of what I’m painting, it’s more of a confidence thing. I’ve made enough work now to understand that. It’s not learning a skill, it’s learning the confidence to apply yourself to whatever work you may do, that’s why we cross over. I’m not just a painter and Sophia isn’t just a photographer. You apply it to whatever you do: t-shirts, masks, photography, graffiti. We’re covering a range of things and it makes us more adaptable. It gives us more opportunities as well, if there’s an exhibition where it’s not painting, both of us would be able to make work for it. @sophia_vigne @kenofzki
Deirdre Rawle Editor www.deirdrerawle.com
Conor Foran Co-Editor www.conorforan.com
Lucas Garvey Creative Director & Designer www.lucasjgarvey.com
Acknowledgments We would sincerely like to thank the following people without whom Bare Issue Two could not have been created: Everyone who donated via our online crowdfunder as well as our fundraiser in NCAD. The NCAD Student Union for supporting Bare financially for the past two years. The NCAD Library and Ann at the NCAD Gallery for their support. Everyone who helped in the creation of our campaign video, Dearbhla NĂ FhaoilleachĂĄin Ryan for contributing her print as a donation perk, and a special thanks to Liam Trumble for all of the help throughout the manifestation of Bare Magazine. All current and past students who submitted their work to be featured in Issue Two.