Bellacorick Series No 2, digital print, by Michael Gannon.
Powerhouse of impressions
‘Bellacorick: Impressions of a Place’, a new exhibition of drawings, paintings and photography by Betty Gannon, Michael Gannon and Ian Wieczorek, opens in Áras Inis Gluaire, Belmullet, this Friday, March 5.
The show is based on authorised visits to the decommissioned Bellacorick power station during 2008 and 2009. The artworks represent the three Mayo artists’ personal visual responses to the iconic building’s structure and former function.
Betty Gannon’s drawings explore the energy of the machinery at the heart of the former peat-fired power station. “Even though the machinery was no longer in operation, the energy of the mechanical dynamic was still at its heart. That is what I am trying to capture,” she explains.
Michael Gannon’s photographs explore the shapes and patterns that embody both the construction and physical presence of the building – “the rhythms of glass and metal that make up the building’s fabric.”
Ian Wieczorek’s paintings address the functionality of the building, emphasising “the organic quality of the building’s organisation.”
Collectively, the artworks constitute a record of a place that for many years was a significant presence, both physically and socio-historically, on the Bellacorick landscape.
All three artists have established artistic pedigrees. Betty Gannon has been included in many group shows, including Claremorris Open Exhibition 2008 and the RDS Student Awards 2007. Her first solo show took place in the Linenhall Arts Centre, Castlebar in August 2009.
Recently enrolled as a fellow of the Irish Photographic Federation, prize-winning photographer Michael Gannon has been involved in many group shows, and has had two solo exhibitions to date. Ian Wieczorek has exhibited extensively in shows in Ireland, Northern Ireland, Germany and China. His most recent solo show was in the Custom House in Westport last October.
Bellacorick: Impressions of a Place will be officially opened by Westport poet Ger Reidy at Áras Inis Gluaire this Friday at 7.30pm. Admission is free, and all are welcome. ‘Bellacorick: Impressions of a Place’ runs until Wednesday, March 31. For further details, call Áras Inis Gluaire on 097 81079.