Beatrice O’Connell focuses on the relationship between nature and culture in her multidisciplinary practice that encompasses painting, drawing, animation and video.
She is interested in the interaction between humans and environment, particularly the idea of collective behaviour and individual identity. The spectre of climate change looms in Beatrice’s work, specifically the lost connection with nature in a highly technologically mediated society. The representations are of creatures and landscapes in flux. We associate bees as forming a collective or unified entity. When they are isolated as portraits they appear like a solitary actor on a stage, but instead of being empowered they appear vulnerable and in danger of obliteration. A trace element of human presence is ever a concern. An anxiety and a sense of mortality is felt in the work, not only the insects’ mortality but our own mortality as time marches on.
Beatrice has exhibited extensively in solo and group exhibitions both nationally and abroad. Selected national group exhibitions include the RHA Annual Exhibition (2015-2019), Rua Red Winter Open (2017 and 2018) RUA Belfast (2015); Claremorris Gallery (2017); Annual Wexford Festival Opera Exhibition (2009) Eigse – Carlow (1998, 2014, 2008) Taylor Galleries Winter and Summer Exhibitions (2017-2020) International selected exhibitions: ‘The Border Art Prize 2012’ Tweed River Art Gallery, QLD, Australia. Affordable Art Show – New York (2007) Art International – Sydney, Australia (1996) She has received several awards including: Dublin Corporation Bursary award at the Fire Station Artist studios (2001) Eigse – Carlow, Emerging Artist Award (1998) Iontas, Student Award (1996) Residencies include the Fundaçion Valparaiso, Spain, the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Co Monaghan and Cill Rialaig, Co Kerry.
Beatrice O’Connell (Dublin 1973) TU Dublin, 1996 BA Fine Art painting 1996, MFA NCAD 2021-22.
“I have a personal connection with the Séamus Ennis Arts Centre as close family were involved in the traditional music scene in Ballyboughal. I am fond of the area for the calm and tranquility and the closeness to nature. At night time the moths would gather under the electric lights at the house in Ballyboughal, a fascinating sight as we scarcely saw any in the city.
Through my artistic practice I would like to draw attention to the often-overlooked insects, their existence under threat through climate change and overuse of chemicals. During the pandemic all of us have felt our worlds shrinking and the patterns of our everyday lives have changed. Organic food and the role of pollinators is gaining importance in this new era of the Anthropocene.
The rural location of the Easter Snow Gallery is of interest to me as Fingal is home to a thriving agri-food industry. Our family have begun to grow our own organic food at home. Since making the switch we have noticed an abundance of pollinating insects, pests and ladybirds. We hope our small eco system is restoring a certain balance. I would like to thank The Easter Snow Gallery for putting on this exhibition under such challenging circumstances”.
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The Easter Snow Gallery is open to the public Monday-Friday from 12-4.00 p.m. Viewing at the weekend is by appointment only. Please email Colette Lawless at email@example.com to arrange same.