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Louise Manifold

Unnatural Esoteric

A solo exhibition by Louise Manifold

At 6pm

On Friday 5th March 2010 in Galway Arts Centre

Galway Arts Centre is delighted to present a solo exhibition by Galway based artist Louise Manifold, entitled ‘Unnatural Esoteric’. The opening will take place at 6pm on Friday 5th March 2010 in 47 Dominick Street. The exhibition comprises of new work in video, photography and sculptural installation.

All of Manifold’s work has the theme of disconnection and distance from the world of which one is living in, while encouraging a creation of an individual reality. Using both fictional and real information the artist builds upon identifiable binaries to open up a dialogue between human perceptions and imagination’s ability to read into what is suggested or unreal. The artist draws her inspiration from over-looked and unbelievable subject matter- ranging from rare delusional illnesses, obscure phenomena and manifestations of medieval melancholy as a means in which to comment upon human awareness in contemporary culture. Her engagement with such material centres upon what she believes is its potential to generate legend or new mythology for the viewer to consume, and contribute to wider cultural legacies.

The structure of the exhibition reflects the artist’s personal fascination with the German wunderkammer, or 'cabinet room of curiosities,’ private museums which date back to the 16th Century. The artist is utilising the idea of the museum where things are grouped and classified as a vehicle in which to contemplate the cultural relationships between hybrid transformations and human and animal identity. For the exhibition the artist embarked upon a residency at one of the oldest intact wunderkammer museums in the world at the Franke Foundation in Halle, Germany in 2009.

For this exhibition Manifold is also drawing mythical tales of shape-shifting alongside published research on Clinical Lycanthropy, a rare psychiatric illness in which the subject is convinced that he/she is turning into an animal.

Manifold began her research with documents on the few cases of clinical lycanthropy documented in 20th century at The MacLean Hospital in Belmont Mass, US who identified 60 cases of Lycanthropy since 1974.

The artist’s search of the modern lycanthropes led her using this information as the basis for the trilogy of exhibited video works.

The Galway born artist Louise Manifold holds a BA in Sculpture from GMIT Galway Ireland, and MA in Fine Art from Central St Martins College London England. She has exhibited extensively both in Ireland and internationally in London, New York, China, Iceland, and Germany.

In 2009, she was one of the four artists short-listed in Ireland for the prestigious Allied Irish Bank prize. Louise is currently based in Galway and a guest resident of Artspace studios.

‘Unnatural Esoteric’ runs until April 14th and admission as always, is free.


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 47 Dominick Street, Galway City