Unseen By My Open Eyes
3 December – 4 February 2017
The exhibition will be accompanied by a new publication, ‘Unseen By My Open Eyes’ by Black Dog Publishing, London.
Unseen by my Open Eyes features four films that explore the construction, projection and manipulation of identity. The focus of the exhibition is A Numbness in the Mouth, a 17 minute vision of a self- sustaining, militarised Ireland where food production and consumption is kept in balance. Created with a Sky Academy Arts Scholarship, A Numbness in the Mouth was filmed on location in a nineteenth-century water-powered flour mill in Dublin. It explores our relationship to the production and consumption of food in a series of staged scenes, monologues and analogies. Interpolated into the film is an infomercial from the 1950’s of a mother baking bread for her children. The two performers inhabit familiar roles and images of women in television which begin to unravel as they reflect on how food affects their temperament, bathe in a vat of orange jelly and sift flour onto their own heads.
In The Mirror is Dark and Inky, daily life in Iran is interrupted by a whale living in a bathtub. Our Stranded Friends in Distant Lands reflects on geographic, political and emotional separations in South Korea. Everything Disappears explores selfhood, relationships and military conscription in Taiwan. Each film is shot in the prevalent or native tongue of the country in which the film was shot, with participants from Iran, Taiwan and South Korea performing the roles.
Kevin Gaffney (b 1987, Dublin) is a visual artist working in film. He graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2011 with an MA Photography and Moving Image, and was awarded the first Sky Academy Arts Scholarship for an Irish artist in 2015. He was an UNESCO-Aschberg laureate artist in residence at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art’s Changdong Residency in South Korea (2014); received a Film Project Award from the Arts Council of Ireland for the creation of a new film while artist in residence at the Taipei Artist Village in Taiwan (2014); and received the Kooshk Artist Residency Award to create a new film in Iran (2015).
His work is part of the Irish Museum of Modern Art’s collection and has been shown in exhibitions and film festivals internationally, including: European Media Art Festival (Germany, 2016); Out There, Thataway at CCA Derry~Londonderry (2015); the Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival (Scotland, 2015); and We at Catalyst Arts (Belfast, 2012). Solo exhibitions include: CAI02 Contemporary Art Institute (Japan, 2014); the Linenhall Arts Centre (Ireland, 2016); and the Galway Arts Centre (Ireland, 2013).
A free bus will run between Dublin and Portadown on the evening of the opening. The bus will be leaving from the RHA at 4:30 on Friday 2nd of December and returning at 9pm from Portadown. For more information and to book your place contact firstname.lastname@example.org