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Exhibitions > '12

05 April 2012 - 28 April 2012


Joe Ryan - Ultra Vires
Tracy Sweeney - New Works


This two person exhibition features the work of Joe Ryan & Tracy Sweeney. Ryan's work is inspired by the theories of Jeremy Bentham's Panopticon and Michel Foucault's institutions and heterotopias. Tracy Sweeney's work stems from days and months of traversing the city of Stockholm. Lost in the city's stations of clinical muted greens, tiled blue tube tunnels and warning signs.

» View exhibit prints
» View Joe Ryan's Biog » View Tracey Sweeney's Biog
Joe Ryan employs the latin term 'Ultra Vires' as meaning 'beyond the powers' of an authority as a title in this first phase of a monumental work which draws on the theoretical approaches of Michael Foucault and Jeremy Bentham. In Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (1975) Foucault introduces the concept of power as 'discipline' and maps the growth of a disciplinary society. He uses the model of Jeremy Bentham's Panopticon to show the structure of power through an architectural design, which allows an observer to observe inmates of any institution without their knowledge of being watched. Through these formidable prints Ryan has taken Erving Goffman's concept of the 'Total Institution' where entire groups of people are under bureaucratic control and stripped of their identity. Ryan's work is also influenced by the complex draughtsmanship of Piranesi (1720 - 1778), famous for his etchings of ancient ruins and imaginary reconstructions of Roman architecture.

Joe Ryan graduated with distinction in MA Fine Art in printmaking from the University of East London and is currently undertaking a Doctoral Research in Fine Art there. He has had several solo exhibitions both in Ireland and the UK.

Tracy Sweeney compares her printmaking skills with that of a trades person as she sees her work as constructing walls, building layer upon layer of colour and texture. Using tradesmen tools to produce her plates; scrapers, Stanley knives, grout and brushes all leave their unique marks. The result is a wonderful edifice of multilayered walls revealing the passage of time on random surfaces and the 'tags' of teenage rebellion on rusted metal. Sweeney also works with smaller plates and then joins them to build an entire wall. She de-constructs forms and letters and exposes quiet repetitive sections to allow the mind to rest and wander to adjacent textures.

Tracy Sweeney is an award winning Irish painter and printmaker. She exhibits internationally, most recently the Paris Biennale 109 and The 2010 Swedish Grafik Triennalen, opened by King Carl Gustaf of Sweden. Her work is part of major international collections throughout Europe. Sweeney works from studios in Sweden and Ireland.


Click on the thumbnails to view in full, dimensions refer to paper-size heigth x width [plate size is in brackets].

Prices are for unframed work, including 13.5% VAT available for sale in Graphic Studio Gallery.




Tracy Sweeney
Spar 27/Platform 27
Collograph & Carborundum
Sold as a set (16 prints) €3,900
Sold seperately at
€290 each


Tracy Sweeney
Forbjudet/It is forbidden to walk the tracks
Collograph & Carborundum
Sold as a set (12 prints) €3,200
Sold seperately at
€320 each


Tracy Sweeney
Wall, Central Station
Etching 1/1
Sold as a set (16 prints) €3,900
Sold seperately at
€290 each


Joe Ryan
Two Towers, Conformity and Servitude
Intaglio
€350


Joe Ryan
Built upon the Three Falsities
Intaglio
€350


Joe Ryan
Within the Panopticon
Intaglio
€350

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