This is a note from me, the exhibition, to you. I really missed you. Art of course continued to be made; in studios, bedrooms, and kitchens. Sometimes placed within digital landscapes, new territories of expansion and contraction… but there was no one to activate it or engage with it. No one to stroke an unframed drawing on a gallery wall, no finger to poke into the sides of what you think might be a sculpture. No scoffing in humour or disdain at an art video. You are very important.
I think the artist (Laura) wants to make art out of, and about, some of the ‘last things’ she sees: rolls of children’s paper from IKEA, giant pages of really expensive paper from John Purcell in London, metal from China that has gone up 30 percent since January – and the last bit of bog.
The artist is not nostalgic. NO! The show must go on. She has just made a place. Arranged some things to let you know about certain narratives that are on her mind. Stuff like: how to be with neighbours, how not to go too mad, how to lean against a wall. It’s all potentially a disaster. There is something very cathartic about the 'last things’.
Kind Regards, The Exhibition
Laura Fitzgerald: I have made a place is the third exhibition in Crawford Art Gallery’s artist-directed programme, which aims to platform the development of an artist’s career, support their current research interests, and connect with audiences through a collaboration with Crawford Art Gallery, its site, and collections. In this exhibition, Laura Fitzgerald creates a place – a smallholding – to examine ideas of art and art practice. In a time of scarcity and Brexit, the artist probes the difficult task of being an artist through drawings, sounds, a new video and a story that conjures a restless figure who is obsessed with cutting turf.
The exhibition comprises new large-scale scroll drawings, video works, and striking bale forms – sculptural and sound installations from which competing voices emerge and invite the visitor to listen, look, and perhaps have a bit of a laugh.
Laura Fitzgerald: I have made a place also features screenings of Into the Mire (2011) by Nigel Rolfe and is accompanied by a commissioned text by Sally O'Reilly and a Learn & Explore programme. A special "In Conversation" event between Fitzgerald and John Strutton will take place during the exhibition's run (details to follow).
The artist's limited edition risoprint companion publication, The Restless Bogman (2021), will also be available to purchase via the gallery shop and online.
Laura Fitzgerald is a visual artist working in drawing, painting, video, and text. A graduate of both the National College of Art and Design, Dublin and Royal College of Art, London, she is a recipient of the Visual Arts Bursary Award (Arts Council of Ireland) for 2021. She was shortlisted for the Zurich Portrait Prize 2020 and recent exhibitions include participation in the 39th EVA International with Fantasy Farming (2020) at Limerick City Gallery of Art, the site-specific Cosmic Granny (2019) in Inch, Co. Kerry, and Lucian’s Neighbours (2018) at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin. She recently received a Golden Fleece Award for 2021 to create a studio on her father’s land in Kerry.
Emmet Place, Cork, Ireland
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