Niamh O’Malley – Glasshouse

Bluecoat, Liverpool

10 Oct 2015 – 10 Jan 2016

Open daily 10am – 6pm. Free.

Bluecoat is to host the first major show in a UK public gallery by Dublin-based artist Niamh O’Malley (1975). Born in County Mayo, Ireland, O’Malley has previously shown at Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin; Centre Culturel Montehermoso, Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain and MoMA PS1, New York. In Glasshouse O’Malley shows recent work for the first time in the UK, as well as newly commissioned sculptures that address Bluecoat’s brutalist style gallery architecture.

Spanning video, drawing, painting, print and sculpture, O’Malley’s work is distinctive for her use of reflective surfaces such as mirror and glass through which images are constructed, revealed and obscured. Her sculptures and drawings chart and frame the marks made by gestures and processes, while the lens of her camera gives close attention to the surfaces and nature of objects and places.

The artist’s investigations into the construction of images through video has led her to make close studies of a series of distinctive sites. These include encounters with the hewn face of a working quarry and a row of abandoned greenhouses, as well as sites that have a deep personal resonance such as a singular mountainscape in County Mayo and her own garden. Filmed with a shallow depth of field these evocative locations evoke the pictorial flattening of painting and, looping endlessly, capture the instant when fleeting moments coalesce as memory.

O’Malley’s previous solo exhibitions have included Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin (2014); a five venue solo show called ‘The Mayo Collaborative’ Ireland (2013); ‘Garden’, Project Arts Centre, Dublin (2013); Ha Gamle Prestegard, Norway (2012); ‘Island’, Centre Culturel Montehermoso, Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain (2010); ‘Frame, Glass, Black’ Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, France (2010).

Group exhibitions have been shown at Irish Museum of Modern Art; Dublin Contemporary 2011; MoMA PS1, New York. Her work is included in the collections of the Irish Museum of Modern Art, The Arts Council of Ireland and GAM Turin.

Related events:

Sat 10 Oct, 2pm

Exhibition Tour: Niamh O’Malley and Head of Programme Marie-Anne McQuay

Artist Niamh O’Malley leads a tour of her new solo exhibition Glasshouse. Free.


Thurs 15 Oct, 6pm

Artist’s talk: Niamh O’Malley & Sean Borodale

Niamh O’Malley discusses her solo exhibition with T.S Elliot Prize nominated poet, artist and writer Sean Borodale. Free, booking required.


Wed 28 October, 7-8.30pm

Artist Film & Video Screening: Infrastructional Objects

Writer and researcher Maeve Connolly has curated a programme of film and video which takes Niamh O’Malley’s exhibition Glasshouse as its starting point. Tickets £3/£2

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