Gormleys Fine Art is delighted to host “Kintsugi”, an exhibition of new works by renowned Irish sculptor, Patrick O’Reilly. Due to covid-19 restrictions the exhibition will take place online from 14th January and can be viewed in person in our Dublin gallery when permitted.
This new body of work is inspired by “Kintsugi” (Golden Repair), the Japanese art of putting broken objects back together; by mending the areas of breakage with lacquer dusted or mixed with gold, silver, or platinum. Spanning a wide variety of subjects, from dolls to rocking horses, hearts to pillars and alabaster blocks, O’Reilly’s new body of work is completed in his signature bronze with new experimentations in resin, and stone. The ancient artform of Kintsugi is evident throughout as many works appear to have been broken but aesthetically mended back together again.
However, Kintsugi has a deeper philosophical significance. The mended flaws become part of the object's design & history, allowing the object to be stronger & more beautiful having gone through the process of being broken and repaired. This deeper philosophical significance of Kintsugi is apparent to O’ Reilly and it has had a profound effect on him.
“My work is reflective on the human condition – a contemplation on the journey of life and the emotions of failure, abandonment, rejection, shame and betrayal that are experienced along the way, Often, we try to avoid experiences that leave us vulnerable to these feelings and often feeling flawed, or "not good enough. I reflect on lived experiences, the minor bumps and scrapes and more serious events that life throws at us.” O’Reilly draws a comparison between plates and glasses that become chipped or cracked over time and use. “I believe that we can deny or attempt to distract from these happenings or we can choose to decide to see these experiences as our golden seams and part of our fabric."
“Kintsugi is built on the idea that in embracing flaws and imperfections, we can create a more beautiful piece of art. Likewise we as people, can hide or avoid difficult experiences and suffer – or we can embrace them and become stronger and even more beautiful with our mended breaks and imperfections.” “Similarly, I feel hopeful that we can come back stronger in 2021 after such a difficult 2020 – and maybe some of what we learned during this trying time will help us in the future.”