Anna Rackard

“Under into Somewhere”

3 March – 26 March, 2016

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Inspired by Francisco De Goya’s painting titled El Sueño (The Dream) c.1800,  ‘Under into Somewhere’ takes the form of a series of large format photographic portraits of sleeping figures, accompanied by a sound piece; inspired by the dreams the sleepers experienced during their participation in the project.

Goya’s painting is beautiful, but unsettling, the subject is asleep, but she could just as easily be dead. The title ‘The Dream’ is also ambiguous, is it a dream the sleeper is having or is she a figure from one of Goya’s own dreams?

‘Under into Somewhere’ is an exploration of the relationship between sleep and death, the vulnerability of the sleeper, and the uncanny nature of dreaming. Sleeping and dreaming are fundamental experiences we all share. When we dream our imaginations are free of the limitations of our conscious minds and of our physical bodies. Why do we dream, does it have a purpose? In his book The Interpretation of Dreams published in 1899, Freud believed that dreams were the royal road to the unconscious. Over 100 years later, despite advanced research and many new theories; dreaming still remains a deep mystery.

 

Anna Rackard works as a photographic artist and a production designer for film & television.

Initially studying architecture, she has degrees in graphic design and fine art photography and draws on elements of all three in her work. Her production design work includes the films Love & FriendshipStella Days and Ondine. She won an Irish Film & Television Award in 2010 for Ondine and again in 2012 for Stella Days. Other film work includes art direction on The Butcher Boy, Braveheart and King Arthur.

In 2014 her photographs were part of Second Sight, a group exhibition from the David Kronn collection, shown at the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin and the Butler Gallery in Kilkenny. She has shown in group exhibitions in the RHA Annual and The Gallery of Photography, and solo shows in Eigse and The Purdy Hicks Gallery, London. In 2001 she published a book, Fish Stone Water on the holy wells of Ireland with the artist Liam O Callaghan and in 2004 co-directed a documentary on the same subject called An Tobar.