Niamh O'Malley × Linda Shevlin
Looking back to a time when we could be physically present in a space with artworks conjures up conflicted feelings of nostalgia and sadness for this moment. A particularly evocative memory is of Niamh O’Malley’s monumental show handle at the RHA in 2019, a cathedral like space where artists need to consider how their work will function on multiple plans including volume, height and breathe. handle drew on ideas of delineation, zones and the marcation of space where our encounter with the work is gently guided by a choreography of horizontal and vertical lines. O’Malley’s repurposing of familiar materials; polished wood, structurally precarious slithers of steel, patterned glass similar to the hallway door of my childhood home, illustrates her refined and understated approach to making. The memory of these beautifully crafted objects is amplified now by the prohibition of physical contact as we long for the moment where we can occupy these spaces again.
Linda Shevlin is a curator based in County Roscommon. Linda has curated, facilitated and managed both large and small-scale visual arts projects, most recently Tulca Festival in 2018 and is currently curator of Facebook Open Arts AIR program for Europe, Middle East & Africa.
Born Co Mayo, Ireland, Niamh O’Malley currently lives and works in Dublin, Ireland. O’Malley has made numerous solo exhibitions in recent years including mother’s tankstation limited (2020), Royal Hibernian Academy (2019), Lismore Castle Arts (2019), Grazer Kunstverein (2018), Bluecoat Liverpool (2015), Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin (2017) & (2015) a five venue solo show called ‘The Mayo Collaborative’ Ireland (2013), ‘Garden’, Project Arts Centre, Dublin (2013) Ha Gamle Prestegard, Norway (2012), ‘Model’, Green on Red Gallery, Dublin, Ireland (2011), ‘Island’, Centre Culturel Montehermoso, Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain (2010), ‘Frame, Glass, Black’ Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, France (2010), ‘Echo’, Gaain Gallery, Seoul, Korea (2010), ‘No Distance’, Void, Derry, Northern Ireland (2009). A selection of group exhibitions include Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival, CAG, Vancouver, KARST, Plymouth, EVA International, Biennale of Visual Art, Limerick, Eli & Edythe Broad Museum, Michigan, Kilkenny Arts Festival, Galleria Civica di Modena, White Box, New York, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Kunstverein Ludwigsburg, Germany. Niamh O’Malley, with Temple Bar Gallery + Studios as the curator, will represent Ireland at the 59th Venice Art Biennale in 2022.