Alison Pilkington; I Build My Own Island
Sat. 10 Jul. – Sun. 26 Sep. 2021

The Model is delighted to present an exhibition of fresh and exciting new works by Sligo-born painter, Alison Pilkington. Pilkington’s practice taps into an inner world of personal experiences to conjure up strange and unsettling worlds where all is not entirely at ease. Humour and the absurd abound in strange unsettling landscapes, where bizarre figures are recurring motifs. Her work draws on a variety of eclectic
influences from ‘high’ and ‘low’ culture - from the classical painting of the 17th century western traditions to the writing of Stephen King and the humourist Ivor Cutler, and the stories of James Joyce.

Through a series of interconnecting paintings, drawings and artists books Pilkington has produced a show at the Model that explores her connections to Sligo. A series of recurring characters inhabit surreal landscapes that evoke lakeshores, seashores and distant mountain ranges. As is particular to her practice she draws on eclectic references from the poetry of WB Yeats to the paintings of El Greco and the cinematic imagery of Ridley Scott and Andrei Tarkovsy that both collide and merge in a richly allegorical body of work.

Alison Pilkington was born in Sligo in 1967 and has earned momentous achievements throughout her career, having studied in National College Art & Design Dublin, IADT Dún Laoghaire and Dublin City University, it was at the former where Pilkington was awarded a PhD in Practice through painting in 2015. Along with fellow artist Cora Cummins, Alison Pilkington is the co–editor of The Fold publication, a platform described by the artists as, “an occasional publication that gathers text and image together on the space of the page to consider particular issues and themes.”

Pilkington’s art practice is described as the manifestation of the psychological self through the medium of paint, and has enabled her to become an esteemed and award-wining contemporary artist. Alison was selected for the Marmite Painting Prize in 2012, shortlisted for Kurt Beers 100 Painters of Tomorrow in 2013, achieved 3rd Prize in Artslant Overall Jurors Award, 2013 and was also the winner of the the ArtSlant
Jurors Award July in 2013 and the British Institution Award Royal Academy Summer Show in London 2012.

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