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Magnetic North Selma Makela

Exploring the Magnetic North in Galway Arts Centre

On 28th February, Galway Arts Centre will open ‘Magnetic North’, a solo exhibition by Galway based

visual artist Selma Makela. Through painting and video, Makela uses geological and meteorological

phenomena as a visual language to evoke the complexities of migration, memory and our changing

environment. The title, ‘Magnetic North’ refers to the Magnetic North Pole, the point on the surface

of the Earth at which the planet’s magnetic field points down. The Magnetic North moves over

time, due to magnetic changes in the Earth’s core. This group of paintings and video draw from a

continued engagement with the arctic, a fascination with the element hydrogen and the scientific

studies around magnetic and radioactive frequencies. The exhibition ‘Magnetic North’ suggests

an alternative or non-linear narrative of both internalised, personal memory and externalised

geographical memory. Makela’s work shows the fragility of nature and how things that seem so

permanent; ice, snow, water, weather, animals, are vulnerable to change. The title of the exhibition

also refers to this vulnerability; even vast, seemingly unmoving and unchanging landscapes are

constantly shifting and attempting to stabilise themselves.

Selma Makela is a recipient of a 2012 Arts council Artist’s Bursary. She has also received awards from

Galway County Council, the Arts Council, the Fleck Fellowship and was a prize winner in the 2007

Claremorris Open. Makela is a graduate of GMIT and is currently pursuing a Masters Degree in DIT.

Makela has exhibited as a solo artist in PEER London, Oonagh Young Gallery Dublin and Ballina Arts

Centre. Makela has exhibited in group shows in Galway, Dublin, Carlow, London and Banff, Canada.

‘Magnetic North’ opens at 6pm on Friday 28th

Galway, and runs until March 29th



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 47 Dominick Street, Galway City