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Periodical Review 20/16 Pallas Projects/Studios, 25/11/16—21/01/17

Periodical Review 20/16

20 years of Irish contemporary art: Four perspectives
Selected by Brian Duggan, Sarah Glennie, Jenny Haughton & Declan Long

Aquinas, Callan Workhouse Union, Nina Canell & Robin Watkins, Dorothy Cross, Willie Doherty, Douglas Hyde Gallery, Fergus Feehily, Four Gallery, Anthony Haughey, Patrick Jolley & Reynold Reynolds, Des Kenny, Aileen Lambert, Clare Langan, Metropolitan Complex, Michael McLoughlin, Isabel Nolan, Seamus Nolan, Emer O’Boyle, Margaret O’Brien, Deirdre O’Mahony

An artwork, like a book, is not made up of individual words on a page each of which with a meaning, but is instead “caught up in a system of references to other books, other texts, other sentences” †

Periodical Review is an annual survey of recent Irish art, selected in collaboration with invited curators from around Ireland. Not a group exhibition per se, Periodical Review is a discursive action, with the gallery as a magazine-like layout of images that speak (the field talking to itself). Each year, Pallas Projects invite a number of peers – artists, writers, educators, curators – to review and nominate a number of art practices, selected via an editorial meeting. Such a review-type exhibition within Irish art practice acts to revisit, to be a reminder, a critical appraisal and consolidation of ideas and knowledge; to facilitate and encourage collaboration, crossover and debate.

Periodical Review 20/16  – which coincides with 20 years of Pallas Projects – sees four invited selectors survey key events, exhibitions, moments and artworks from the past 20 years to the present. The chosen practices emphasise the recent developments in contemporary art in Ireland, a period of new engagement with international practices, an increase in visiting artists, curators and speakers, with Irish curators and educators taking up major positions overseas, and Irish artists being showcased around the world. The works display and demonstrate a new confidence and energy that emerged in the visual arts during the 1990s and 2000s, by individuals and institutions. A period that included the international conferences such as Cork Caucus, 2005; the emergence of redesigned spaces such as Project, Temple Bar Gallery & Studios, and The Model; international art fair profile for Irish artists through galleries such as Kerlin and mother’s tankstation; new major regional galleries such as The Glucksman and VISUAL; critical publications such as Third Text’s ‘Ireland Issue’ edited by Lucy Cotter, or Paul O’Neill’s ‘Curating Subjects’; and acclaimed Irish pavilions at the Venice Biennale.

In looking at self-organised exhibitions, off-site projects, commercial gallery and museum shows over this 20-year period, Periodical Review 20/16 aims to share a spectrum of practices, creating dialogue and critical reflection to help develop and support Irish contemporary art as a whole; and to act as an accessible survey of contemporary art for a wider audience, showing an expanded experience of art practices from around the country.

† Michel Foucault, The Archaeology of Knowledge

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