Seamus O'Rourke: Censorship and Loss

Missing Pictures 

Missing Pictures

Lost Collection

In this work, I emphasize a critical moment in the History of Modernism with a corresponding process on paper: I examine ideas of censorship and loss,in relation to the destruction of Artwork termed ‘Degenerate Art’ or ‘Entartete Kunst’ by the Nazis in 1939. It is estimated that 1,004 paintings and 3,825 works on paper were destroyed. In this ‘Dark Inventory’ series, I examine the empty spaces left behind after these Artworks were confiscated from German Museums and which were burned in Berlin by the Reich. This annihilation of Modernist paintings is the conceptual basis and context for these ink ingrained works on paper. These blacked out drawings critique the act of censure and the curtailment of expression. In these drawings, I engage with politicizing the space between what is visible and what is absent. Subsequently, this challenging act of scrutinizing loss, creates the engagement for communicating to an audience, the constant vigilance required to protect freedom of speech.

Empty Hall
Burnt Moderns

Seamus O’ Rourke Born in Co. Wexford ,Ireland, in 1964. Studied at Waterford School of Art ( 1985 - 89), Limerick School of Art( 1991 - 92) and the University of Ulster at Belfast, M.A. in Fine Art (1993-4). 

Solo Exhibitions: Entoderweder Galerie, Germany 1992, 1996 and 2000. Galerie Tendenz, Sindelfingen, Germany 1997. Limerick City Gallery of Art at the Hunt Museum 1997. Galerie Sanjo, Kyoto, Japan 2003. The Workroom, Dublin 2003. Broadstone Studios,Dublin 2008.Broadstone Studios,Dublin 2013. Pallas Projects,Dublin, Ireland 2014. ARC Gallery,Chicago,USA 2016 

Group exhibitions: Belfast Young Contemporaries 1994, Guinness Hops Store 1994, EV+A 1995, 1998, 1999, 2005, “ First Look “ at the RHA Gallagher Gallery and the Butler Gallery, Kilkenny 1999, Cheltenham Open Drawing Exhibition 1999 . 15th International Triennale of Drawing, Moderna Galerija, Rijeka, Croatia, 2000. 1st International Drawing Biennale, Melbourne, Australia (Award Winner), 2001. Galerie Voelcker & Freunde, Berlin; Jan - Apr 2003. Goethe Institute, Dublin 2003. ‘Full circle’, Templebar Galleries 2004, 5th International Biennale of Drawing, Pilzen, Czech Republic 2006. “Schwarzweiss” , Galerie Inga Kondeyne, Berlin, 2007. ‘ Process Visible’, Monster Truck Gallery, Dublin. 2009.’All colours Black ‘(two), Cross Gallery,Dublin.2010. ‘Horizon Sprawl’ Ormston House, Limerick 2012. 5th International Drawing Exhibition,Museum for Architecture,Wroclaw,Poland.2012 Catalyst Arts Gallery,Belfast ,2014.’Over the Edge:Paperworks Unbound’,WAH Center,Brooklyn,New York 2014. Manifest Gallery,Cincinnati, USA 2015.’Drawing never Dies’, Redline, Denver, USA 2016. 

Awards: Has received Arts Council of Ireland awards in 1992, 1996, 2000 ,2003 and Cultural Relations Committee Awards 1992, 1997 and 2000. Culture Ireland Award 2016. His work has been reviewed in Suddeutsche Zeitung in 1992, 1996 and 2000. The Sunday Times 1994, Kreiszeitung Boblingerbote 1997, The Irish Times 1999 and EV+A 1999 (catalogue essay), Circa issue 81,Chicago Magazine 2016. Website: Lives in Dublin.