Ceannt is primarily a figurative artist with a strong sense of form. His pieces are tactile and often stylised to better emphasise lyricism and the expression of movement. The surfaces are smooth, juxtaposed with planes, demonstrating a serious and sensuous engagement with the material from which they are crafted. He particularly enjoys the physicality of sculpture and the time-worn craft of bronze casting, using the ‘lost-wax’ (cire-perdue) method and working in close collaboration with the expert staff at Bronze Art foundry.
Eamonn Ceannt lived in Africa and has travelled extensively in Asia and the Indian Sub-continent. These experiences have had a significant influence on his work both on the subject matter and the finish. His colour palette is dominated by greens, blues and earth colours, from mallard to peacock and the red soils of Africa. He is fastidious about the layering of the patina.
Ceannt studied life drawing over many decades at both IADT and NCAD but came late to sculpture. The work required in kneading the putty-like modelling clay helped to restore strength to his fingers, hands and forearms, the result of an accident in 1991 which threatened to leave him with significant residual damage.
His work is held in a number of public collections including University College Dublin, Blarney Castle and Yeats Open Air Gallery Sligo as well as private collections both in Ireland and abroad. He is the Chairperson of The Museum of Literature Ireland (MoLI) and a Trustee of the Alfred Beit Foundation (Russborough) and the Chester Beatty Library and was previously Bursar and a Vice-President at UCD.
“The definition of the visual arts as a “sensuous engagement with materials” is one that I value and certainly Eamonn Ceannt’s tactile approach to the making of sculpture well illustrates the veracity of that observation. His commitment to form is fully realised in his beautifully cast works in bronze.” - Robert Ballagh