press release

GALERIE AKINCI concludes the year's gallery season with an exhibition of new works by the British artist Moyna Flannigan. Originally from Edinburgh, Flannigan is currently regarded as one of Scotland's leading figurative painters. Her shrewd and ironic observations of modern humanity and society finds a focus in her work that is fully and assuredly her own.

Flannigan paints portraits of fictitious figures in oil paints and watercolours. Some of her characters appear to be more or less everyday people, but others are disturbing or ambiguous in appearance, while still others are highly alluring. Instead of working from models or photographs, Flannigan's fictitious characters arise from her imagination, vigorously nourished by her recollections of everyday life. For Flannigan, the process of painting a portrait extends over many months; it entails a search to identify a particular character and a notional context for him or her. Brought into the imaging of her characters are every kind of detail with regard to social status, class, family and relationships and sex. Her works are not portraits at all in fact, but visualisations of a collective consciousness.

Flannigan is exhibiting a new series of drawings and paintings at Galerie Akinci. Her recent work makes use of general themes from the history of art as reference points: Mother and Child, Dreams, Vanity Portraits and Allegories. These new 'portraits' refer to the crises created in the individual by the disturbed values of a world dominated by celebrity, financial greed and self-serving religious posturing. Using humour and slapstick, she incorporates these grave and socially complex issues into her work tangibly, so that, as she herself expresses it, "a tragi-comedy results".

Moyna Flannigan (1963) studied at the Edinburgh College of Art, UK and Yale University School of Art, USA.

Flannigan has participated in numerous exhibitions in the United Kingdom and abroad, including Here + Now: Scottish Art 1990-2000 at Dundee Contemporary Arts, Open Country – Scotland: Contemporary Scottish Artists, at Musée Cantonal des Beaux-Arts, Lausanne and the National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh. She exhibits regularly at the Sara Meltzer Gallery in New York and at Doggerfisher in Edinburgh.

Her work makes part of the Saatchi collection London.


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Moyna Flannigan