“Have you seen Patricia Hurl in IMMA? Have you been to Irish Gothic, her retrospective there?” These have become my go to lines with anyone I’ve bumped into over the last while. It’s like sharing what feels like a best kept secret and, in many ways, Hurl has been. Her last major solo show was in 1988 in the Temple Bar Gallery & Studios.
Photos: Malcolm McGettigan
I went down in March to see her work and was, admittedly, blown away. I’ve been back three times since and anticipate a few more before it ends. It’s a personal narrative of love and loss and life, one which is intrinsically wrapped into the narrative of this country. Canvasses which say so much and translate so freely, sketchbooks of observations and inner thoughts – the soul laid bare. Suburbia, marriage, church, state, sexuality, repression, freedom and hope are all evoked in powerful, moving and stunning work. There’s echoes of Bacon at times but Hurl is utterly unique in her own right because it is only her story to tell.
It is a privilege to tell this tale in these pages, made all the more impactful by having her son Ken Doherty, of Assassination Custard fame, in the room(s) to help accentuate it. Do yourself a favour and go see Irish Gothic.
– Michael McDermott
also in the May edition
- The Rose Tattoo is revived for the stage 66 years since it was first performed, leading to obscenity charges. It is being adapted within the contemporary traveller community. Michael Lanigan & Sean Breithaupt drop in on rehearsals.
- Conor Stevens has a fiesta at La Gordita which he finds to be “an antidote to the fussed-over small-plates places that come freighted with attitude and the natural wine problem”.
- We chat with soлomiya, a magazine formed in response to russia’s war against Ukraine.
- Jinx Lennon talks about the power of his music, so powerful it stopped a murder!
- Cúán Greene from Ómós reconsiders what ‘festival food’ should mean to us.
- Kerry Mahony has a vintage rummage with Loot in their new “design-led creative space”
- Tom Lordan visits Uri Aran’s new exhibition, Take This Dog For Example, in Douglas Hyde Gallery
+++++ all the regulars and much more.
Our May edition can now be found across the city and online.