Siamsa Tíre

‘There and Not There’ Photographic Exhibition Opens at Siamsa Tíre

‘There and Not There’ Photographic Exhibition Opens at Siamsa Tíre

Photographic Exhibition by Victoria J Dean and Sharon Murphy

THERE AND NOT THERE is an exhibition of photographic work by Victoria J Dean and Sharon Murphy which will be open to the public at Siamsa Tíre, Tralee from Saturday 16th February. Originally exhibited at Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast in 2018 and curated by Sarah McAvera, the exhibition shares a concern with landscape and with interventions in the landscape: built structures that emanate ambiguous force or presence; and semi-allegorical child-figures who are sited or staged in different natural settings. The exhibition continues until Friday 22nd March, with an ‘In-Conversation’ event with the artists and an official launch on Saturday 23rd February from 5.00 – 7.00pm.

Dean’s practice explores the human propensity to rationalise space, in the context of place and landscape while Murphy’s practice conceives of space as ‘staged’ and the body as ‘site’ where the outer world and inner feelings intersect. While each artist’s work is distinctive, they share an unsettling preoccupation with absence.

Sarah McAvera, Exhibition Curator comments, “There is something sinister in the works of these two artists, a feeling that danger is present even though there is no evidence that it will occur. What is there and what is not is not so easy to decipher, allowing for multiple interpretations and stories to be seen.”

Siamsa Tíre CEO, Catríona Fallon notes, “The work of these two artists lends itself wonderfully to the gallery spaces in Siamsa Tíre.  Sharon Murphy’s background in theatre and fascination for theatrical spaces gives a particular resonance to her photographs in the building.  Her work is complemented by the stark, often bleak nature of Victoria Dean’s large-scale images, one of which features the iconic Eask Tower near Dingle Harbour.  We are delighted to be able to bring this exhibition to Siamsa and to a wider public.”

The official launch on Saturday 23rd February will include an ‘In-Conversation’ event with the two artists and Siamsa Tíre CEO, Catríona Fallon from 5.15pm, followed by the official opening at 6pm. For further information - There And Not There

Siamsa Tíre would like to thank the Arts Council of Northern Ireland for their generous loan of one of the artworks. We would also like to thank the Golden Thread Gallery and Sarah McCavera for curating the exhibition.  Siamsa Tíre is funded by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and Kerry County Council.  Our Corporate Sponsor is Kerry Group.  We would like to gratefully acknowledge the support of all three.


Photographic Artist - Victoria J. Dean:  Based in Northern Ireland Dean has exhibited and been published internationally including in 2018: Off festival Bratislava: ‘The Anthropocene’, Slovakia; ‘LensCulture Emerging Talent Awards’, Klompching Gallery, New York; ‘There and not there’, the Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast; ‘188th RHA Annual Exhibition’, Dublin; ‘137th RUA Annual Exhibition’, Ulster Museum, Belfast, and previously: ‘On the Border between Time and Loss’, Galway Arts Centre, 2016; ‘Emerging’ (Slideshow Night), Annenberg Space for Photography, Los Angeles, and ‘Royal Academy Summer Exhibition’, London, 2015; ‘Circulation(s) 2014: Festival de la Jeune Photographie Européenne’, Paris, 2014; ‘Northern Ireland: 30 Years of Photography’, Belfast Exposed & The MAC, Belfast, 2013, and Magenta Foundation’s ‘Flash Forward’, Boston, London and Toronto, 2013-14; and ‘PDN’s 30 Emerging Photographers’, New York, 2007. Represented by the Golden Thread Gallery (Belfast), Dean featured in ‘SCOPE’ New York and ‘Elective Perspective’, Galeria Arsenał in Białystok, Poland in 2010.

Dean received the Royal Ulster Academy Award for Outstanding Students on obtaining an MFA Photography with distinction from Belfast School of Art at Ulster University, and was selected by Olivia Arthur (Magnum) and Anna Sparham (Curator, Museum of London) in Source Magazine’s ‘Graduate Photography Online 2017 Selections’. A winner in the ‘LensCulture Emerging Talent Awards 2017’, Dean was also a finalist in the Klompching Gallery’s ‘FRESH 2017’. ‘The Illusion of Purpose’ book was published by Another Place Press in 2018.

Dean’s work is part of the David Kronn Collection, the Arts Council of Northern Ireland Collection, the Office of Public Works State Art Collection (Ireland), and a number of private collections in the UK and Ireland.

Photographic Artist - Sharon Murphy: Sharon lives and works in Dublin. Her practice encompasses photography, video, sound and costume and her work is rooted in theatre. Her interests centre on the performative aspects of photography and on the essence of performance. She conceives of space as ‘staged’ and the body as ‘site’ where the outer world and inner feelings intersect.

She has exhibited nationally and internationally, and her work is held in both public and private collections. She has received support from The Arts Council of Ireland, The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Dún Laoghaire Rathdown Co Co and works collaboratively with performance ensembles and actors. She has most recently exhibited at RHA Dublin, Golden Thread Gallery Belfast, Dunamaise Arts Centre, Portlaoise and at Loop Festival Barcelona, an international platform for contemporary video art, film and moving based image.

Sharon holds a BA in Photography from Dún Laoghaire Institute for Art, Design and Technology IADT (2014), and a Masters in Theatre from UCD (1993). She also works as a Curator in both public art and gallery contexts and is resident curator at Draíocht Arts Centre, Dublin 15. 

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