Owen Quinlan: Transformed in Fire

My art practice explores the material world and how we have come to inhabit it. The geological processes which have shaped our surroundings, and the many ways which we in turn shape and alter these are central to my work.

As a maker of objects, I’m drawn to certain qualities… Objects with dual characteristics, both natural and industrial appeal to me. Those that inhabit that fine threshold between one state and the next most of all. Locally, the Claddagh shoreline is a rich resource for my research.

On closer inspection, its sands constitute as much man-made material as organic. The countless pieces of brick, delft, glass, plastic and metal, slowly eroding along its shoreline have now equally come to constitute this landscape alongside its naturally occurring sands. Places like this resonate with human activity of past and present. They illustrate how the impact we have on our environment is often profound and sometimes permanent.
How we influence our landscape, and how in turn our lives are recorded on the materials we come into contact with are central themes to my work. This is something I try to capture in the objects I make.

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