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Autumn colours in the hills above Dublin

It’s a wonderful time to get out in the hills as the leaves are changing into wonderful autumn colours, reds , golds, browns all shades of green in there too.

Out walking

I love to collect a few seed heads of common plants for artistic inspiration. I spotted quite a few colourful toadstool mushrooms which I didn’t go near as I have no knowledge and I wouldn’t even risk touching one of these fungi but I do love to photograph them. I love the autumn colour that these colourful mushrooms bring with them and I am fascinated with the gills and their symmetry.

Toadstool in the forest

I think of Keats poem – Ode To Autumn

“Season of Mists and mellow fruitfulness, close bosom-friend of the maturing sun; Conspiring with him how to load and bless

With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run; ” How evocative and eloquent.

I love these burnt orange colours my favourite of the autumn colours. Its great to act like a kid and walk a path strewn with dried leaves and give them a good kick as you walk in the local park. Reflections in the lake in Marlay Park are so still at this time of year. Cutting a pumpkin for Halloween and making a spooky face to scare off the ghosts that walk closer to us at this time of year, or so we believe in Ireland.

Marlay Park

Happy Halloween to everyone

Ceramic sculptures in the Dublin Hills

Ceramic Sculpture Natures Window in the Dublin Hills.

I was inspired to create a series of porcelain ceramic sculptures that I felt echo the natural beauty I see up in the hills overlooking Dublin. I made a video of my ceramic installation and called it “ Nature’s Window”. The birdsong was recorded during the early part of the lockdown this year in May 2020 in the exact same spot when I was struck by their beautiful calling above me. The tall trees stand all around like people gathering to watch a show. The natural opening in the trees struck me when i first saw it, it was like a window on the busy city of Dublin below. The trees on either side acting like guardians of the window. My series of sculptural pieces hang invisibly swaying and turning in the breeze, revealing glimpses of the city unfolding below us. I like to think that Natures Window is looking down on our daily lives, our daily problems and responding with birdsong. The porcelain pieces are circular in nature and this is a reflection of the circular nature of our lives and of nature itself which is constantly changing and turning , nothing stays the same. I liked that my sculptural pieces swayed and turned and adapted to the environment and added another dimension to natures own window which had been formed in the forest. I hope people are inspired when viewing the piece to stop and reflect on life and its simple beauty as i have done.

I collected pine cones from these very trees earlier in the year and i coated them in porcelain slip, high fired them and interwove them into some of the ceramic sculptures as I wanted to have part of the trees physically incorporated into the sculptures to aid their earthing to that spot. Porcelain clay is itself of the earth and its a fitting material to use when creating sculptural pieces to sit in a natural environment.

Porcelain sculpture in the trees
Ceramic Sculpture in the hills

I would like to thank all my family for all their help putting this together, and most especially my husband Mark. Thanks also to Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Council Arts Dept for all their support.

I hope people like the video installation and let me know your thoughts.

Into the woods

In such strange times as this it’s so fascinating to me that my walks up to the woods during the early part of the lockdown would lead to me creating and hanging work up there to video and photograph. I would never have conceived this idea had it not been for this strange set of affairs with this potentially life threatening Virus. There is such freedom now outdoors and it’s driving me anyway , into the woods ..

As we were hanging the work and it certainly took more than me, a man stood in a nearby field observing us for a time , I wondered what he thought of it all.. strange goings on in the hills, people hanging porcelain ceramics from the trees !

A piece from “Natures window”

Working on my installation in the Dublin Hills

Sculptures hanging in the trees of Dublin
The porcelain turns dark against the city view

Today i was up in the hills working on the installation of my sculptural and sound piece in the hills called “Natures Window” I had some family help, I certainly could not have done it without them. We needed to get a transparent line rigged up between the two main trees on either side of the “window”. I had tree huggers to protect the trees from any damage. We needed a ladder and plenty of organisation especially when you are dealing with porcelain clay ! The weather was perfect, no rain for once that week and the sun came out before the rain came down and caused me to stop for the day. I took plenty of photographs and some video work was done. You try your best with these things and get as many angles and photos , videos as you can and hope you have got enough.

Porcelain sculptures hanging in the trees above Dublin with Artist Andrea Kavanagh
The view in the other direction which is strikingly beautiful
Porcelain Sculptures in the trees
Emerging Artist 2020 DLR

I was setting up my camera working on my installation , checking the area and testing the light a few days before , trying to judge how the installation was going to work.

Its wonderful to see the changes in this spot through the months of going up there. I was very honoured to receive a bursary from DunLaoghaire Rathdown County Council as one of their Emerging Artists for Visual Arts in 2020.

https://www.dlrcoco.ie/en/funding-opportunities/emerging-artist-grants

the window on south Dublin, a view of the city from the hills

Unfortunately “Land/Marks” exhibition closed for 3 weeks due to Dublin level 3 Covid Restrictions

Ceramic Ireland announced the closure today on social media platforms. Photo credit Rory Moore

It’s sad to see this happening today but nothing I can do about it and hopefully we will be back open again 12th October 🤞

https://www.ceramicsireland.ie/currentevents

Harvesting Physalis Alkekengi “ Chinese Lanterns” today for making another hanging piece, the work goes on !