First Solo Exhibition of the Year at Solas Gallery

“MEMORY SURFACE” At SOLAS Gallery Ballinamore

The first solo exhibition of the year at Solas Gallery, Ballinamore opens on Fri 15th Feb, “Memory Surface” by artist Karen O`Dowd. Karen is from just outside Carrick on Shannon, attending the Community school there and going on to get her BA(Hons) Art & Design at the National College of Art and Design in Dublin. She has already exhibited locally and in Dublin, but this is her first major solo exhibition apart from her graduate exhibition. Her talents are diverse, drawing, painting, video works, many of which will be on show at this exhibition.

This current body of work explores the interwoven network between memory and landscape. Since the beginnings of time humans have had a powerful connection with landscape and place. Margaret Drabble in “à Writers Britain: Landscape in Literature” described landscape as a living link between who we are and what we are. In Karens statement she says “my imagery could be described as moody and shifting, layers overlap layers, threads and networks of thought attempt to reflect the internal workings of our mental landscapes and the manner in which we mirror them externally”.

The bulk of her research has come from her home place in a rural setting and her personal history with the imagery and scenery of the place has allowed for a depth of intensity in the work. “Most of my imagery depicts scenes, which hint at the loss of human presence but the sense of place remains. However, landscape is not static, it changes much more slowly than our own life cycle, but it will inevitably alter”. This exhibition is amazingly easy to personally connect with, the suggestions of fields, ringforts, haycocks, field boundaries in some of the images just draw one in; as a whole the exhibition is fascinating, but with each piece a beautiful picture in its own right.

The exhibition will be officially opened on Fri 15th Feb at 7.30pm. The exhibition will be opened by Sandra Vernon who is an admirer of Karens work and thinks she has great things in front of her. It is open until 8th March, opening hours, 10-6pm. For any enquiries about the exhibition or the gallery please contact Gail or Ben at 071 964 4210; or visit our website or facebook page.


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Photography by Eunan Sweeney. Video by Niall Magahey.

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