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David Beattie × Oonagh Young

I showed this work in the gallery as part of a solo exhibition called Tools and Objects and was charmed by its playfulness while being captivated by its utilitarian and formal minimalist aesthetic. It contains only those elements that are required to make it work but the strong graphic wooden tripod that centres and contains the work commands a space that elevates an apparently simple scientific experiment into something much more intriguing. It has the benefit of the audio with the continual rhythm of the dripping water sizzling on the hot plate that results in creating constantly passing clouds. Beattie considers this sculpture a key work in his oeuvre that arose from his explorative material studio practice at that time and it subsequently traveled to Toronto and the United States. He has continued the conceptual framework evident in Cloudmaker in his more recent works by unpicking the entangled relationship between nature, humans and technology through his research into the interconnectedness of all things living and non-living.

Oonagh Young is a curator, graphic designer and director of Oonagh Young Gallery and Design HQ. She has a regular programme of exhibitions, has developed socially engaged projects and designs and produces books for artists and cultural institutions.

David Beattie
Cloudmaker, 2009
Electric hob, wood, water, plastic container
220 x 120 x 120cm
Courtesy of the artist
Exhibited in 2009 at Oonagh Young Gallery, Dublin and Mercer Union Centre for Contemporary Art, Toronto, 2010

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David Beattie is an artist and lecturer based in Dublin. Assembled from a variety of everyday materials his work is realised through sculpture, photography and sound. He was awarded the Harpo Foundation Award (2010) and was a recipient of the Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA collection (2016). Recent commissions include The Walker Plinth (Derry, 2020), Reflectors (Bray, Co. Wicklow, 2019), and Patterns of Illumination (Griffith Barracks Multi-denominational School, Dublin, 2018). His work has been exhibited in Pittsburgh, New York, Toronto, London, Brussels, Paris, and throughout Ireland.