The People The Land at Luan Gallery | On Show | Athlone Arts and Tourism

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The People The Land at Luan Gallery

Luan Gallery presents "The People, The Land" a two man exhibition showing for the months of May and June showcasing the works of two male mid career artists: Tom Byrne and Paul Woods. posted: Apr 04

Centenary commemorative exhibition - The People The Land, Luan Gallery

Friday 22nd April to Sun 19th June 2016

Following the success of ‘100’, a mixed media group exhibition featuring artistic responses to the 1916 centenary theme, Luan Gallery is delighted to present their second specially scheduled centenary show: The People The Land. This exhibition is a two man show which opens on Friday 22nd April and runs until Sunday 19th June 2016 showcasing the works of two painters of history: Tom Byrne and Paul Woods.

Tom Byrne%2C Thomas McDonagh%2C oil on canvas

 Tom Byrne, Thomas McDonagh, oil on canvas

History and portrait painter Tom Byrne will show 16 new art works based on the topic of the 1916 Easter Rebellion. This series of work will featuring the 16 executed rebel leaders and will include paintings of Thomas Clarke, James Connolly, Patrick and Willie Pearce and Thomas Kent. Ranging in age from 25 to 58, their occupations included headmaster, tobacconist, poet, railway clerk, university lecturer, printer, humanitarian, water bailiff, art teacher, silk weaver, corporation clerk, farmer, trade union leader, bookkeeper, chemist’s clerk and newspaper manager. This section of the exhibition will form The People and will invite the visitors of Luan Gallery to come face to face with the 16 executed men.

Tom Byrne states:
“When painting portraits I try to get beneath the person’s skin I try to understand them on a more emotional level. In doing this body of work I could not conceive how someone could give up their life for a belief in the greater good of a country, I could not perceive how these men would fight a battle they knew was impossible with such overwhelming odds. My only conclusion is that like art and artists, these men didn’t choose this path so much as this path chose them.”

Paul Woods%2C Aftermath%2C GPO%2C 2015%2C oil on canvas%2C 100x150cm

Paul Woods, Aftermath, GPO, 2015, oil on canvas, 100x150cm

The Land will feature Paul Woods’ work. Woods will show 6 new paintings also on the theme of the 1916 Rising, completed in an abstract expressionist fashion. Woods works look at the scars and devastation of the land caused during the fighting. Bringing together Woods’ two principal interests: visual imagery and military history, these works of The Land, researched primarily from archive photographs, will juxtapose against The People creating a strong exhibition of painting.

Paul Woods states:
“Warfare and conflict are the predominant themes in my work - I believe that events of the past, often unresolved or misrepresented, have a great influence on our understanding of society and community today. Through my art I deal with past and present traumas from history. I try to use the mnemonic potential of painting to weave together conflating personal stories and collective events. I choose my subjects from several categories: architectural structures, organic and plant forms, personal artefacts, people's faces, geographical landmarks. While ideals and principles are fought over in uprisings and insurrections, the end result is invariably the tragic loss of innocent civilians and the physical destruction of treasured landmarks and buildings. In the works for The People The Land exhibition I focus on the unprecedented scale of urban destruction that resulted from the actions in the 1916 Rising”.

James Connolly Heron, great grandson of James Connolly will officially launch the exhibition on Friday 22nd April at 6pm. Proinsias O’Rathaille, grandson of The O'Rahilly will also be in attendance on the night. The exhibition launch will be accompanied by a wine reception and all are welcome to attend. The exhibition will run until 19th June 2016.

Admission to the gallery is free for groups and individuals. School or group tours and workshops can be arranged by contacting the gallery in advance on 090 6442154.

Luan Gallery is open Tuesday – Saturday 11.00 – 17.00, Sunday 12.00 – 17.00 and is closed on Mondays.


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