press release

“Man has a prejudice against himself; anything which is a product of his mind seems to him to be unreal or comparatively insignificant. We are satisfied only when we fancy ourselves surrounded by objects and laws independent of our nature”

Aleana Egan’s practice can be described as a process of collecting - a series of ‘cuttings’ - tangential recognitions which are ongoing and offer a repeated reading of material, form and experience - an accumulation of words, literature, piers, film, metal cornicing, ceilings, the sea, the rounded corners of wood work, layers of an interior. Indeed the title for this show and the outdoor sculptural work commissioned for the exhibition, comes from the words adorning the cover of a found 1942 Church of Ireland blotter calendar and yearbook.

Doodled on and marked by the previous owner, it is typical of the origins of much of Egan’s works - definite as a physical artefact, it simultaneously opens up infinite imaginary histories and experience, saying as much about Egan for quoting it, as the past owner. There is then a process of inclusion, a desire to involve the source and filter this through Egan’s experience of it - an exploration of expressing psychological states and making experience concrete and solid.

Egan has recently spoken about how works are more and more compromised and changed due to her emotion and place, made within ‘real time’ against a backdrop of what she describes as ‘escape shapes,’ Egan develops a leniant approach to compromise and change. The origin of the work is often shifted away, but although filtered and diluted it is still ever present as, a slight form, or material. It has just now become a symbol of Egan’s process and no longer itself.

Words increasingly act as material - the effect of mutual developmental words and the physical work are central. As do the motivation for recollecting,remembering, the act of remembering and indeed, structured remembering. For Egan, temporal is food for sculptural action. There is a sense that Egan is saving up feeling for later, as in ‘The Philospher’s Pupil’ (Iris Murdoch), “This too was what made tears come into her eyes when Brian recalled the dansants.”

Living between Berlin and Dublin, Egan (b. Dublin 1979) has exhibited recently with a solo show ‘We sat down where we had sat before,’ Kunsthalle Basel; 5th Berlin Biennale; Scala Paradisi, Schurmann, Berlin and ‘Wilkommen to reality,’ Galerie Sandra Buergel, Berlin. Forthcoming group shows include ‘Transformational Grammers,’ Galleria Francesca Kaufmann, Milan and ‘Heavy Metal,’ Kunsthalle zu Kiel.

Outdoor work, Carlton Place by River Clyde

This exhibition has been generously supported by Culture Ireland

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Aleana Egan
War Atlas Yachting & Nautical Cuttings