Exhibition with Maura McKee
A joint exhibition of mixed media pieces and poetry by Maura McKee and Colin Dardis, part of the 'From the Ground Up!' exhibition, held in ArtCo, Letterkenny, the project was part of the WordArt Festival, curated by Ailbhe Hines.
The conversation between the artists took the form of pieces of visual art each accompanied by a 'response' poem. A selection of Colin's poems was performed as a one-off event to launch the exhibition.
McKee's mixed media pieces presented a variety of visual references, techniques and materials- including graphite, ink, emulsion, acrylic, parchment, textiles, pencil and stitch. The works drew on elements of the objects and symbols which become markers of events in our lives; the items and appendages, marks and tracks of our experiences, aiming to bring private human experiences out of anonymity and into collective space.
Colin’s poems were crafted as a direct reaction to McKee’s pieces. Each one served as an direct accompaniment, metrical antiphons to the artwork. The poetry deals will the realm of the visual world, filtered through the poet’s imagination and psyche, to translate the work onto a verbal platform.
A river bends through battlements
and future townlands grow out of
yearning to spread and nurture.
See ghosts in the towers of origin,
dominance locked into masonry,
loyalty and praise as craftworks.
from A Mourning
We forget the words, waiting for peace
to return from earth’s lungs,
and whisper instead visions
of awakenings rather than wakes:
borrowed from distance and abandonment,
allowing old stars to die,
searching for new lights to sail by.