Mary Ruth Walsh

‘A slow stillness unfolding’

4 September – 26th September, 2015



Mary-Ruth Walsh is just back from AABENRAA Artweek residency in Denmark. It was a great opportunity for her to continue The Hugh Lane work made earlier this year. This work satirised the housing and planning crisis in Dublin through film and sculpture, or ‘guerrilla architecture’ as she prefer to call the latter work. In Denmark she made more of these ‘guerilla architecture’ sculptures placing them on the Town Hall and on the Sydbank building (one of the biggest banks in Denmark).


Walsh gives some insight into the work where she describes using a ‘language of seductive surfaces’ to manipulate the context of consumer plastic packaging. These everyday objects are drawn in fine detail to make them appear as monumental architectural structures. The consumer objects as architectural forms relate, in part, to the longevity of plastic. This contrasts with the short life of big retail buildings particularly in America where the lifespan can be as short as 20 years.


Walsh’s use of ‘seductive surfaces’ to form part of her inquiry which ‘stems from a curiosity and an exploration of real space encounters; including encounters with artwork. In part, its about the mediation of space, and art, through the lens, computer, internet, magazines, books etc. What happens in that gap between the object and its two-dimensional representation is full of promises and denials, of realities and unrealities. The drawings [and paintings] are a deliberate exercise of improbability and possibility. But the subtext is also about the substitution of real experience or real time. I mean real time in experiencing spaces and in viewing artwork. If the viewer chooses to stay and engage with the work, some of its uncanny aspects become apparent and the ideas in the work begin to tease themselves out.’*