Category: Exhibitions

Vitality of the Sea paintings by Kenneth King continues until Sunday 31 August

SIRIUS ARTS CENTRE invite Kenneth King Vitality of the Sea

Exhibition & Book Launch on Thursday 14 August 2014 at 7pm

Exhibition continues until Sunday 31 August

 With special guest speaker

Rear Admiral Mark Mellett DSM

Deputy Chief of Staff (Support), Defence Forces

Sirius Arts Centre, Cobh, Co. Cork presents Vitality of the Sea an exhibition of new works by Donegal based artist Kenneth King curated by Marianne O’Kane Boal. King has significant connections to Cork having shown at the Cork Boat Show 1982-1985, Sirius Art Centre 2005 and the National Maritime College, Ringaskiddy 2009. The artist has created a substantial body of work specific to Cork. His oil paintings of vessels of the Irish Navy have been presented to various Commanding Officers. Moreover he has several paintings in the collection of the Navy, depicting the International Naval Review in Cork Harbour in 1996, which have been part of Kings of the Tides exhibition in the Harbour Office, Belfast, in 2012, curated by Marianne O’Kane Boal. Other exhibitions include Maritime Paintings of Cork 1700-2000 curated by Peter Murray and shown in the Port of Cork headquarters, Custom House Street, marking Cork 2005: European Capital of Culture.

This exhibition is important in that it includes thirty recent works from the artist’s studio and a further fifteen on loan from different institutions including the National Maritime Museum, An Post, the Irish Naval Service, Cobh Heritage Centre and private collectors.

Works on exhibition include ‘Fastnet Rock,’ ‘Roches Point Lighthouse,’ ‘Tuskar Lighthouse,’ ‘L.E. Roisin,’ ‘L.E. Samuel Beckett (Aoife and Orla in company),’ ‘L.E. Macha,’ ‘L.E. Maeve,’ and L.E. Cliona.’ Furthermore the exhibition is intended to mark the Cobh launch of a major publication on the artist entitled ‘Kenneth King: Life and Work’ by leading Irish writer Marianne O’Kane Boal, with a preface by maritime historian Terry Conlan. The publication is a detailed analysis of the artist’s work in light of the maritime painting tradition and providing literary context, with reference to his life and formative beginnings and with over one hundred illustrations.

‘Kenneth King’s work is a combination of scrupulous attention to detail and empirical realism, yet it is also marked by an immediacy and freshness that denote the might and vitality of the sea, the surrounding landscape and material heritage.’ writes Marianne O’Kane Boal.

The book was funded by Ealaion na Gaeltachta, Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Donegal County Council with support from Oideas Gael, Udaras na Gaeltachta and business sponsors that include Swan Net Gundry, Atlantic Dawn Group and Western Seaboard Fishing Company Ltd. Special thanks also to Oliver Hawes and the World Ship Society.

Dr Denise Ferran has written in the Irish Arts Review, “Marianne O’Kane Boal’s book on the marine painter Kenneth King…is a visual delight and a riveting read, not just for seafarers and art lovers but also for marine and social historians.”

Gallery Hours: Wednesday – Friday 11am 1pm & 2pm – 5pm / Saturday & Sunday 2pm – 5pm / Monday & Tuesday Closed


Absence of Subject in Irish Times


Irish times 18_04_14Sirius Arts Centre’s new exhibition ‘Absence of Subject’ photographs by August Sander and Michael Somoroff was mentioned in the Irish Times last Friday 18/4/14. Made possible with the support of Cork County Council, ADMIRA, Feroz Gallery and the Arts Council! Running until 1 June – Gallery hours are: Wed – Fri 11 – 1 & 2 – 5/Sat & Sun 2 – 5/ Mon & Tues closed

Opening Saturday 14 September 14:00 – Edge of the Real – Photographs by Roger Ballen

“Photography is like going into the mineshaft”, says Roger Ballen.  In his profession as a geologist, his fieldwork sometimes has taken him 2 kilometres under the earth’s surface in search of diamonds, gold, and other minerals. These subterranean pursuits have deeply influenced his artistic vision. As his development has progressed, the excavation has continued – time and again he masterfully brings up to the surface what he finds buried in the depths of his unconsciousness.


One of the most influential photographic artists of the 21st century, Roger Ballen’s photographs allows one to slip into an uncomfortable, yet somehow familiar terrain.  Originally from America, Ballen moved to Johannesburg South Africa in the 1970’s.  Never formally educated in photography, he made his living as a geologist until his third book, “Platteland” was published. Up until then he considered his photographic pursuits more a hobby than an occupation.

The exhibition at Sirius Arts Centre will include imagery from the many different stages of Ballen’s work beginning with his early projects such as, Platteland, to the creation of more complex compositions which explore a deeper side of his own psyche in his later series Outland, Shadow Chamber, Boarding House and also his most recent work, Asylum.  The development of his mark making in set-ups and backdrops combined with the presence of animals and graffiti like symbols illustrate this descent into a deeper and often chaotic atmosphere.  Ballen was recently heralded for his direction of South African rap-rave group, Die Antwoord’s music video, ‘I Fink You’re Freaky’ which has won best music video awards in Poland and Portugal and makes up a new publication, “Roger Ballen and Die Antwoord” published by Prestel in 2013.

Edge of the Real was premiered at Belfast Photo Festival in June – for this expanded edition Sirius Arts Centre’s Artistic Director, Peggy Sue Amison has included additional photographs from Ballens’ oeuvre in order to directly illustrate the changes and development of his visual language over the years.

Special thanks to Belfast Photo Festival and Roger Ballen for their support in making this exhibition possible.

This exhibition runs until Sunday 20 October 2013

For more information on Roger Ballen please visit his website at:

Gallery Hours:
Wed – Fri 11AM – 1PM & 2PM – 5PM/ Sat and Sun 2pm – 5pm/Mon & Tues CLOSED.


Our next exhibition Anamenesis – New Works by Marie Brett


Sirius Arts Centre

New Works by Marie Brett
opening Thursday 7 March at 6:30pm
running from 8 March – 1 April 2013
Special opening hours for Easter Weekend (see below)

Alluding to the act of recollection ‘Anamnesis’ explores ideas surrounding the use of amulets as an object to commemorate infant loss.  Through this work the individual’s memory is re-imagined as a collective cultural memorial.

This exhibition is part of a national, multi-site participatory arts project – The Amuletinitiated and led by West Cork based artist, Marie Brett, as a community collaborative initiative, focusing on the subject of pregnancy and infant loss, giving voice to a sensitive and difficult life experience, the exhibition is accompanied by a publication including six commissioned essays.
Special thanks are extended to participating bereaved family members who collaborated with the artist.

This project is made possible with the support of the Arts Council, Cork County Council, the HSE, Cork University Hospital, Bally Phehane/Togher Arts & Craft Initiative, Waterford Regional Hospital,St. Munchins Maternity Hospital and CREATE.

Special opening hours Easter Weekend: Good Friday 12 noon – 5pm, Easter Saturday 2pm -5pm/Easter Sunday 2pm – 5pm/Easter Monday 12 noon – 5pm

Things Left – Installation, Artist talk and Opening

The Artist as Sculpted by the Students of the Crawford College of Art and Design, 2011, sculpted clay

The Artist as Sculpted by the Students of the Crawford College of Art and Design, 2011, cast plaster

Kane Do’s work centers around the issue of personal identity.

Things Left is, in part, made up of a project created while Kane Do was in Residence in the Sirius Arts Centre for October – November 2011. During that time he collaborated with students from the Crawford College of Art and Design to create works which deal with the theme of personal identity.

The work comprising Things Left were organized and laid out in a way that utilizes the gallery space in a unique way, which was an easy task for Kane as he was quite familiar with the space from his residency in 2011.

Here are some shots of the installation process.





Kane was born in Vietnam and moved to the United States as a child. He moved between cities, studying in Portland, Oregan and lived in New York City for a time. He is currently based in Berlin. Kane gave a talk in the Crawford College of Art and Design on Thursday 31st January, on a short break from installing his work, to explain the concept behind his work.

Displacement is a key factor in Kane’s work which he described as being conceptual for the most part. What gives us identity? What constitutes personal identity? Is it our citizenship papers? Our passports? Our race? Culture? Our material belongings? Having been on residency in various places like Finland, Ireland, Japan, etc, Kane’s work has changed in practice and his choice of materials reflect the situations he finds himself immersed in.

After a very successful opening  on 1st Feb Things Left will run until Sunday 3 March.



Things Left – Kane Do

Inspired by his investigations into the issues surrounding personal identity, Berlin based Kane Do presents a series of works which consider to what extent are various elements, which we as a society base our identity on, are truly inherent and how much is given/assigned by persons and organisations in positions of authority?

Are these two categories exclusive, or is there negotiation between the two? How much of our identity is based on objective/fact and how much is based on faith/trust?

Things Left is in part made up of a project created while Kane Do was in Residence with Sirius Arts Centre from October – November 2011.  During that time, he collaborated with students from the Crawford College of Arts and Design to create a project also dealing with these themes.

Exhibition runs until Sunday 3 March
Gallery hours are Wednesday – Friday 11Am – 5pm/Saturday & Sunday 2pm – 5pm/Monday & Tuesday Closed