Lucie O’Hara and Michael Cummins
Lucie takes pieces of beechwood small enough to lie in the palm of your hand. She carefully prepares them with a smooth gesso and paints with egg tempera and watercolour. Her subjects range from small potent objects simply presented, through faded scraps of envelopes or photos and richly tactile fragments of fabrics or pottery, to magical landscapes and places. Objects are important and so are surfaces; some pieces seem half erased revealing scoured layers beneath, others are richly built up with glazes and gold leaf. The individual histories of the ephemeral objects and evocative places echo and reinforce each other across the collection.
Michael’s new work is in acrylic and ink on a range of papers. He folds the paper into symmetrical zig-zag forms reminiscent of chap-books, accordion pleats or pop-ups. The resultant three-dimensionalised paper pieces are lightweight but strongly structured. These forms are then embellished and inhabited with abstract and figurative elements in a space that is both chaotic and strictly regular. Large-eyed heads loom out of a landscape where whorls of concentric colour spin while ominous clouds brood. Characters scurry or loiter in the available spaces between. Everything is confronted with its mirror image, everything is doubled.