Artist in Residence at Sligo Gaol 2018-2020

Sharp Edges, Sligo Gaol (photograph Emma Stroude 2018)

This year marks the bicentenary of Sligo Gaol, an extraordinary time capsule in the heart of Sligo Town. Having opened in 1818, the gaol closed it’s doors in 1956 and has barely been touched since. It is a fascinating place where layers and layers of history are waiting to be discovered within its graffiti covered walls of thickly peeling paint.

Red and Green, Blue and Yellow, Sligo Gaol (Photograph Emma Stroude 2018)

This year also marks the centenary of the imprisonment of Michael Collins at the gaol. He wrote detailed diary entries describing his time there, now held by the national archive.

I feel very lucky to have been given the title of Artist in Residence at the gaol for 2018-2020 by Friends of Sligo Gaol, a dynamic group of volunteers who are striving to conserve the gaol and promote greater understanding and public awareness of it’s history and heritage. Their ultimate goal is to see the gaol opened to the public as a heritage site.

During my residency I plan to make work in relation to Michael Collins and also some of the female political prisoners relevant to Sligo, Bridie O’Mullane and Linda Kearns. In tandem with this I intend to explore and research the physical building. The gaol provides  a wealth of visual inspiration and I have been given an opportunity to record elements of this including the current atmosphere that may be hard to retain once opened to the public in the future.

Counting, Sligo Gaol (Photograph Emma Stroude 2018)

This is just the beginning! I can’t help but be very excited by the prospect of this project. I’ll keep you all up to date with blog posts along the way. 

Sligo County Council has designated the year 2018 as ‘The Year of Sligo Gaol’. Friends of Sligo Gaol are hosting events this September to commemorate the bicentenary of the gaol’s opening and the centenary of Michael Collins’ imprisonment. Find out more on their website

Still Time to Visit Christmas Miscellany at Hamilton Gallery, Sligo

Hamilton Gallery in Sligo invited a selection of artists to contribute to their exhibition ‘Christmas Miscellany’ which opened in the early weeks of December 2017. I painted the six pieces shown below especially with the exhibition in mind. Themes of day-dreaming and escape run though the work, those moments when we find ourselves staring into space, lost in thought, given permission by the uncluttered vastness of what we are looking at to allow ourselves moments of quiet clarity in comparison to the frantic business of the world below.

Dreamer, Oil on Canvas, 40cm x 30cm (Photohraphy Dickon Whitehead)

Electric Blue, Oil onCanvas, 30cm x 40cm (Photography Dickon Whitehead)

Secrets On The Wire, Oil on Canvas, 40cm x 30cm (Photography Dickon Whitehead)

Thinking About The Little Things, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 40cm (Photography Dickon Whitehead)

Strange Fiction, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 40cm (Photography Dickon Whitehead)

The Quiet Edge, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 40cm (Photography Dickon Whitehead)

The other artists showing in the exhibition are Yoko Akino, Jean Bardon, Petra Berntsson, Jonathan Cassidy, Joe Dunne, Catherine Fanning, Michael Flaherty, Conor Gallagher, Annie Harrison, Stephen Lawlor, Kate MacDonagh, Eoin Mac Lochlainn, James Mc Creary, Trudie Mooney, Niall Naessens, Lars Lyberg, Seamus O’Byrne, Ruth O’Donnell, Sorca O’Farrell, Cormac O’Leary, Patrick Pye, Vincent Sheridan and Heidi Wickham. It’s an exhibition that is really worth spending some time with. Follow this link to see the entire works on line – Christmas Miscellany at Hamilton Gallery

The exhibition runs until January 27th 2018….. there’s still time to go along and enjoy!

New Work at Galerie Terbeek

Since May 2017, my work has been represented for the first time in mainland Europe by Galerie Terbeek, based in the Netherlands. They have a fantastic website that is well worth taking the time to explore. You can follow the link here to see my work available at the gallery – Emma Stroude at Galerie Terbeek

My latest work to arrive at the gallery is pictured below…..

From Sand To Glass, Oil on Canvas, 50cm x 60cm , Photography Dickon Whitehead

Towards Infinite Tomorrows, Oil on Canvas, 50cm x 60cm, Photography Dickon Whitehead

A Place Apart, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 30cm, Photography Dickon Whitehead

Land of the Iron Horse, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 30cm, Photography Dickon Whitehead

Royal Ulster Academy of Arts 136th Annual Exhibition

My portrait ‘Eleven’ was happy to be on the wall in Belfast at the opening of the Royal Ulster Academy’s 136th Annual Exhibition amidst work from many exceptional artists.

Eleven, Oil on Canvas, 20cm x 20cm, 2017 will be shown at the Royal Ulster academy, Belfast in October
Photography Dickon Whitehead 2017

I was delighted to learn that my piece sold on the first night! I’m looking forward to getting to Belfast to see the exhibition in a couple of weeks time. If (like me) you live far away all the work can be viewed on the Royal Ulster Academy website.

Invited Artists ‘Small Works’ at The Hyde Bridge Gallery

I was delighted to be asked to take part in a group exhibition of small works at The Hyde Bridge Gallery in Sligo. The gallery has been very supportive of my work and my development as an artist over the past five years and it’s always feels like coming home to show there. 

Among other artists whose work features in the show are Heidi Wickham, Niall Sheerin, Tina Brooks, Marilin North, Gary Robinson and Catherine Fanning (also co-curator).

These three paintings are featuring in the exhibition which runs from October 3rd until November 7th 2017:

A Place Apart, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 30cm, 2017

Sleeping Giants, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 30cm, 2017

Land of the Iron Horse, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 30cm, 2017

The notion of moving through varied landscapes and our presence and effect on those places is prevalent in the work. Although the works are small I have tried to describe immense spaces within the boundaries of the canvas. These are quiet spaces, away from the crowd, where there is room for thought and contemplation.

I’ve had great feedback on the exhibition as a whole so far. The work is diverse and interesting and two people have contacted me separately to tell me it has inspired them to pick up the brushes again! You cant ask for more than that!

3 Ierse Kunstenaars (3 Irish Artists) at Galerie Terbeek, Netherlands

Exciting news!!! My work will feature in an exhibition titled Three Irish Artists alongside work by Ian Rawnsley and Margaret Egan at Galerie Terbeek in The Netherlands, opening 23rd September and running until October 28th. These three paintings are among the work that may feature in the exhibition.

Creating My Own Geography, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 40cm, 2017, Photography Dickon Whitehead 2017

This Evening’s Performance, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 40cm, 2017, Photography Dickon Whitehead 2017

RHA 187th Annual Exhibition

Waiting for Evelyn, Oil on Canvas, 30cm x 40cm, 2017

The excitement is building for the opening of the Royal Hibernian Academy’s 187th Annual Exhibition. 
The piece above, ‘Waiting for Evelyn’ was selected for exhibition. Varnishing Day…here I come!
Opening Monday 22nd May.

Work Featured in Imago Mundi’s Irish Collection

Last autumn Imago Mundi published it’s Irish Collection ‘2016 an Image of Ireland’  I am very proud to have work featured on the pages of this beautiful publication. My piece, ‘Continental Drift’ will now tour the world with the rest of Luciano Benetton’s global collection.

Follow the links below to see more…

Continental Drift, Oil on Canvas, 12cm x 10cm, 2015, Imago Mundi Collection

3 Pieces in the collection of the Office of Public Works

Open Road, Oil on Canvas, 80cm x 120cm, 2015 (Collection OPW)

As of December 2016 I am delighted to be able to say that three of my paintings are now in the collection of the Office of Public Works, Ireland. 

‘Open Road, 2015’, pictured above was sold by The Doorway Gallery, Dublin. The two paintings pictured below, ‘Not a Bad Day, 2015’ and ‘New Dawn, 2015’ were bought from The Kildare Gallery, Maynooth. 

Not a Bad Day, Oil, 35cm x 33cm, 2015

New Dawn, Oil, 36cm x 36cm, 2015

GLOW at Hamilton Gallery, Sligo



Glow At Hamilton Gallery, Installation Shot, 2016

Glow At Hamilton Gallery, Installation Shot, 2016

Artist and Curator, Andy Parsons opened my solo exhibition at Hamilton Gallery. I felt that he really understood my work and what I am trying to achieve. Here is a copy of his opening speech:

” I am delighted to introduce Emma Stroude’s new exhibition ‘Glow’, to you tonight.

When Emma asked me to say a few words I jumped at the chance because I think Emma is doing something very new and exciting with her work.

I think Emma’s work asserts the fact that painting has a unique power and vitality. The medium is rooted in history and yet in the right hands it can do things which are completely contemporary and new.

The pictures in this exhibition do something very interesting in relation to time. They take the split second of a photographic image, and then use the medium of painting to stretch and expand it into something altogether different.

This ‘painted’ time is more open, and more meditative.

The paintings also do something very interesting in relation to movement. They have many different kinds of movement in them: the blurring of things seen by the side of the road, the unstoppable movement of wind, rain and clouds and the movement of people through the environment.

The way that Emma has manipulated time and the movement in these paintings, makes looking at them an experience which is very human, an experience which is closer to our perception than any photographic image can be.

In these paintings Emma captures fleeting moments and looks at them really, really intensely. The process brings out the unfamiliar in the familiar and everyday.

When you see lampposts, street signs and tarmac in these paintings you are firmly rooted in the present day. But the paintings depict the timelessness of the landscape, and the power of nature, alongside the evidence of human activity.

The paintings seem to celebrate the world as it is, in all it’s complexity. They elevate scenes we all might encounter on the way back from the shops or the school run into things which are profound and beautiful.

And speaking of celebration, the paintings celebrate the act of painting itself. Emma’s paintings share a delight in the medium of paint, the textures, brushstrokes and unique physicality that the medium has.

So, I am delighted to open the Exhibition and to congratulate Emma on her great work.”

Andy Parsons 2016

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