Statement on work for Mermaid Art Centre Exhibition titled ‘Peering Out’
Patrick Mac Allister
The work in this exhibition reflects a gradual transition from recurring themes (e.g. the Dublin Lockout series, the Cable Street series, the Bog Body series) to more purely abstract paintings and collages inspired by the materials themselves.
My work is archaeological, excavating layers of paint to get at an essence that has energy and resonance.
I work best in an intuitive, improvisatory manner, from historic news footage, local and urban landscapes, other artworks, or really anything that triggers my imagination. I use industrial tools (scrapers, fillers, knives, screwdrivers) to inscribe my response to a subject.
What brings all of my work together is a determination to get under the surface of the subject, be it abstract or semi-figurative, and distil its essence in as raw and direct a way as possible.