Now my brother is a bit of an expert when it comes to family history. He believes that long ago, the McGloughlin (Mac Lochlainn) clan came from Sligo. He tells me that he’s been up every winding boreen and down every rushy glen in the county in search of that elusive homestead from whence we came (but we still haven’t found what we’re looking for).
Anyway, I went up to Sligo the other day – to the Model to see the Cairde exhibition, to the Hyde Bridge Gallery to see the Nineteen Hundred and Nineteen exhibition, but the highlight for me was attending the opening of Lapse, a solo exhibition by Páraic McGloughlin at the Hamilton Gallery. Páraic is one of the Sligo McGloughlins and, I’m proud to say, one of my nephews.
I say ‘one of my nephews’ because, as it happens, he’s an identical twin and the idea of twins or double images was very much to the fore in this impressive exhibition of mostly large oil paintings.
For me, it was about the human condition. There were moving portraits of the artist’s family and friends but behind it all was an exploration of human sensibility and emotions – how nothing remains static, how multifaceted life can be and how, perhaps one painting simply cannot tell the full story.
But it was also about mark-making and an investigation into the properties of paint. It was interesting to see how the work had developed over the years, with the earlier paintings being heavily worked in impasto and the more recent ones having a lighter, more refined touch.
This is primarily an exhibition of paintings (there are some bronze sculptures as well) but Páraic also makes mind-blowing video pieces, as does his brother Kevin.
(See their websites below.)
The exhibition continues in the Hamilton Gallery in Castle Street, Sligo until the end of August. The works can also be viewed online.