Curated by Sarah Kelleher and Brian Mac Domhnaill
31 August – 21 October
Opening reception Thursday 31 August 5.30-7.30pm
Programme of associated events to be announced
The Lavit Gallery is proud to present a landmark exhibition to celebrate the organisation’s 60 year anniversary. Curated by arts writer and academic Sarah Kelleher and Gallery Director Brian Mac Domhnaill, Taking Form celebrates the foresight and vision of the Cork Arts Society in recognising the talent and potential of three young sculptors, each of whom were awarded the Cork Arts Society’s Student of the Year in the 1970s; Maud Cotter, Eilis O’Connell and Vivienne Roche. In bringing together the narratives of these acclaimed artists, this exhibition points to a significant moment in the development of contemporary Irish art, when a dynamic and ambitious approach to sculptural practice emerged from Crawford College of Art in Cork.
Taking Form will present new work along with rarely seen early sculptures and archival material spanning the artists’ lengthy and illustrious careers. The individual and shared experiences of Maud Cotter, Eilis O’Connell and Vivienne Roche form an important part of this project and will be documented and presented in the exhibition and through an associated programme of events hosted in collaboration with MTU Crawford College of Art & Design and Crawford Art Gallery, which was home to the college in the 1970s.
Maud Cotter (b. Wexford, Ireland 1954) lives and works in Cork, Ireland. She studied at the Crawford School of Art, Cork in the 1970s and was a recipient of the Cork Arts Society Student of the Year Award in 1974 and 1975. Recent exhibitions include a consequence of – a dappled world, at Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane, Dublin, 2021; The Twin, Coventry Biennale of Contemporary Art, Coventry, UK, a consequence of – a breather of air, at The Dock, Carrik-on-Shannon, 2019; :backyard sculpture, DOMOBAAL Gallery, London, a consequence of – without stilling at Limerick City Gallery of Art, Matter of Fact, solo show at Domobaal Gallery, London, 2016; 2116: Forecast of the next century, Lewis Glucksman Gallery, Cork, 2016 touring to Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, MI, USA. Compression, Ormston House Gallery, Limerick, curated by Ed Krčma, 2015; Fourth Space, Inaugural Exhibition, Uilinn, West Cork Arts Centre, Skibbereen, Co. Cork, 2015; The Air they Capture is Different, The MAC, Belfast 2013. She was Initiator/Curator for The Land of Zero, Crawford Art Gallery, Cork, 2014 and has lectured in Art and Architectural colleges in Europe and America. She is a founder director of the National Sculpture Factory, Cork and a member of Aosdana.
Eilis O’Connell (b. Derry, Northern Ireland 1953) is a sculptor based in County Cork, Ireland. She studied at the Crawford School of Art, Cork in the 1970s and was a recipient of the Cork Arts Society Student of the Year Award in 1977. She later studied at the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston and was subsequently granted research fellowships at The British School at Rome and P.S.I. in New York. A two-year residency at Delfina Studios London in 1988 resulted in her moving there until 2002 when returned to live in Ireland. She is represented by Solomon Fine Art in Dublin and Pangolin London. She has represented Ireland and Britain at the Venice, Paris and São Paolo Biennales and her small sculptures were shown at the Guggenheim Museum in Venice. In 2018 her series of outdoor sculptures were exhibited at E1027, the world-renowned home designed by the Irish architect & furniture designer Eileen Gray (1878-1976) in Cap Martin, France. O’Connell’s work can be found in numerous high profile public locations in London (Canary Wharf, London Docklands Development Corporation), Cardiff, Newcastle, Bristol, Wolverhampton, Southampton, Milton Keynes and in Dublin, Belfast, Dundalk, Mallow and Cork in Ireland. She is a founder director of the National Sculpture Factory, Cork, a former member of the Arts Council of Ireland, a member of Aosdána, and a member of the Royal Hibernian Academy and international Fellow at the Royal Society of Sculptors in London.
Vivienne Roche (b. Cork, Ireland 1953) is a sculptor who lives and works near the sea in County Cork, Ireland. She studied at the Crawford College of Art in the 1970s and a recipient of the Cork Arts Society Student of the Year Award in 1973. She later studied at the School of Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Over the last 35 years she has worked in large-scale bronze, glass, steel, sailcloth, stuccodore plaster, and reconfigured landscape. She has exhibited widely in Ireland and has participated in a number of exhibitions internationally, notably in Sweden, Finland and France. She is represented in public and private collections in Ireland, and abroad, and has created many large-scale public commissions throughout Ireland, many of which have light as a central focus such as NC Iris (Dublin 2006), Whitelight Garden (Dublin 2006), Light Ensemble (Cork 2008) and Light House (Killarney 2009). She is a founder director of the National Sculpture Factory, Cork, a former member of the Arts Council of Ireland, a former Board member of the National Gallery of Ireland, a member of the Royal Hibernian Academy and a member of Aosdána.