Curated by Shelly McDonnell & Grace Mitchell
This is an exciting time at Artlink, the creation of a membership system which offers support for locally based visual artists and in turn benefits contemporary visual culture in the region. Membership builds a support network for individuals and creates opportunities for artists to self determine contemporary practice. One of the themes for this exhibition reflects this collection of artists and their individual way of working as well as how they interact as a group. The work of an artist can often be a solitary activity. Working as part of an artist collective generates opportunities spreads knowledge, ideas and can also have a subconscious influence on an artists practice. By fostering an atmosphere of creativity allows artist the freedom of expression and encourages the production of new art work. This atmosphere in turn infiltrates the wider community.
The theme of collection is carried though this exhibition Artlink Members Annual Exhibition; Mark 1. By examining how the artist creates a work of art, the point at which the individual makes the distinction of what will be included or overlooked in this creative process. Wither consciously or otherwise the choices the artist makes with regard to mark making, editing, colour choice or composition, it is this consideration which ultimately result in the creation of a piece of art.
About the curators:
Shelly McDonnell is an artist and independent curator based in Galway City. She was board member and Chairperson of 126 Artist-Run Gallery from 2013- April 2015. During her time in 126, in addition to facilitating many exhibitions and national and international exchanges with artists and organisations, she coordinated the first 126 Quarterly Magazine and was chief coordinator of the 126 research project FOOTFALL: Articulating the Value of Artist Led Organisations in Ireland (published March 2015). She also sits on the board of TULCA Festival of Visual Art and Engage Art Studios and was Assistant Producer of TULCA 2014 (curated by Valerie Connor). Freelance curatorial work includes Engage Annual Members Show, Clifden Arts Festival (2013), Hyperopia, Clifden Arts Festival (2012), The Coach House Show, Dublin Castle (2003-2009). She graduated with B.A. Hons. in Fine Art from NCAD, Dublin in 2004.
Grace Mitchell is an Art Administrator and Independent Curator. She is currently Studio Manager of Engage Art Studios, Galway. She is Secretary of the visual arts advocacy group ADAPT Galway. Previously Grace was Treasurer of 126 Artist-Run Gallery (2014-2015) and Arts Administrator and Workshop Coordinator of Lorg Printmakers (2009-2011). Previous curatorial projects include Lorg Printmakers/ BIP Art (Brighton UK) Print exchange programme (2010) and the Lorg Printmakers/Zea Maze Printmakers (Massachusetts, USA) Print Exchange Programme (2011). She has a B.A. degree in Fine Art Printmaking from CCAM, Galway Mayo I.T. (2008) and a Masters Degree in Arts Policy and Practice from NUI Galway (2012).