Sara MacKillop and Mary Redmond @ DCA

Article by Ben Robinson | 15 Sep 2010

A sculptor presents a solo show in each of the DCA’s two galleries for this intriguing double-header. Sara MacKillop and Mary Redmond’s displays reveal mutual sympathies and affinities while both artists still cling to individual identities all their own.

MacKillop’s installation Similar Variance provides a selection of discreet interventions inside the solid DCA surroundings with materials seemingly salvaged from charity shops. Transplanting these weathered objects to a setting of such dazzling art-chic grandeur can’t help but lend them a faded, melancholic wooziness, and the disjunction comes over as being tender, sincere and affecting. The undersides of jigsaw puzzles hug the corners and mismatched wallpaper patterns decorate one side of the room, while the pink ink-stained ends of shopping receipt till rolls hang suspended from the walls. Whether or not all this adds up to the comment on “economic and political transition” described in the gallery’s blurb is open to your own interpretation, but still the arrangement is a delight. The modest clutter of keyrings, rolls of Sellotape and second hand books here creates an assemblage of muted elegance far greater than the sum of its constituent parts.

Along over in the larger gallery, Mary Redmond presents The Floating World whose materials betray the Japanese influence of the show’s title. Blinds, bamboo, woven cane and carved deer horn are all put through varying degrees of duress. Fine delicate lines fracture and splinter to create patterns that together seem both artful and damaged, while paint-spattered light shades appear simultaneously frenzied and serene. Evident throughout is the sensitive use of texture and a way with a poetic title – Girl in the Shadow Mirror Fishing for Harmonies in the Inky River is one such example. Both installations share a keen feel for the humble and the ephemeral, and taken together they complement one another very happily indeed.

Until 10 Oct