‘Sense of Place’. Exhibition of new work by Jonathan Brennan.
Sense of Place
A series of large oil-on-canvas, and acrylic-on-canvas, paintings celebrate places neglected and hidden, from warehouses to wastelands to buildings in need of preservation. One series features buildings in the city centre, including the Cathedral Quarter. They are rendered as washed-out, ghostly after-images, as if already fading from memory. One work depicts a recently-demolished but previously perfectly-functional hotel, its lift shaft still standing amongst a pile of rubble like some bizarre funerary monument.
The show also features experimental photographs in the form of a diptych created over the course of a year. Brennan left a tiny pinhole camera on the roof of his studio (itself home to over 100 artists and marked for re-development next year) to create two ‘solargraphs’ – long-exposure photographs that track the path of the sun. The volatility of leaving a ‘camera’ exposed to the elements for a year is seen in one of the final pieces where water got in and caused the photo emulsion to run.
Referring to ‘Sense of Place’, Jonathan Brennan says:
‘I tried not to overthink what I wanted to paint – simply selecting vistas that grabbed me in some way, on walks, cycles, from bus windows, etc. – and began painting in a scale that I haven’t worked at before. Looking back, they have a coherence I didn’t anticipate – some works show that line where nature rubs up against the urban, something which has always interested me. All feature in-between spaces, areas full of character that give a sense of place to our city, yet have been sadly neglected. A recent fire shows how neglecting whole areas can lead not only to a loss of identity but also livelihood.’
‘Sense of Place’ opens Friday 14 October, 6-9PM (all welcome) and continues until 30 October (Fri-Sun 12-5PM or by appointment: email@example.com) at Vault Artist Studios.
Jonathan Brennan bio
Jonathan Brennan (Dublin, 1978) is an artist living and working in Belfast since 2012. He works with various visual media such as printmaking, painting, video and photography. Digital technology can sometimes play a role in the process of creating his works. He is preoccupied by the relationship between digital and traditional techniques, and the values we impose on them. He is drawn to nature and landscape as subject matter and is fascinated by how urban and rural rub against each other in our cities.
Memory and place always play a significant role in his work. His works are in private collections in Europe and the US. He also teaches at the Belfast Print Workshop, writes and builds websites.
Jonathan is a member of the Belfast Print Workshop and Vault Artist Studios.
Find out more on www.jonathanbrennanart.com
Disclaimer: Jonathan is one of the editors of this blog!