Dublin Visual Artist Niamh McCann selected for Solas Nua’s Norman Houston Multi-disciplinary Commissioning Award

Solas Nua in Washington, D.C., is delighted to announce that Dublin-based visual artist Niamh McCann has been selected for Solas Nua’s inaugural Norman Houston Multi-disciplinary Commissioning Award.

The Norman Houston Multi-disciplinary Commissioning Award is a bi-annual commission for a new work open to artists working in any discipline on the island of Ireland. Part of the overall Norman Houston Project, this commission will comprise of a six-week research and development residency at STABLE Arts  in Washington D.C., travel and accommodation provided (in 2022), followed by a presentation of the new work produced for the commission (in 2023).  Expenses covered by the commission will include production costs and fees, travel, accommodation and shipping.

The Norman Houston Project is a new project initiated by Solas Nua in Washington D.C., dedicated to the memory of Norman Houston, the former Director of the Northern Ireland Bureau (NIB), in the United States.  The project includes the Norman Houston Short Film Award, presented to the best short film form Northern Ireland at Solas Nua’s annual Capital Irish Film Festival and the Norman Houston Multi-disciplinary Commissioning Award.

Niamh McCann is a Dublin based visual artist. Her work is a considered, individual voice in contemporary Irish art; effortlessly correlating strands of three-dimensional work, painting/drawing and installation. This in itself is unpredictable and frequently humorous, as evidenced in the playful use of appropriated political figuration in her body of work, Furtive Tears [Dublin City Gallery the Hugh Lane, 2019].  Layering and re-coding the given image, figure or cultural trope, a quasi-deified equilibrium is achieved when juxtaposed with globalised cultural imagery. McCann is represented by the Green on Red Gallery in Dublin and has work in the collections of Irish Museum of Modern Art; The Arts Council of Ireland; Limerick City Gallery, Swansea City Council; The London Institute; Hiscox, London and that of Dublin City Gallery the Hugh Lane.

“Niamh McCann’s art is alive with resonances and paradoxes. It appears as protean as the world it is assembled from and yet it feels self-contained; capturing a plurality of ideas and echoes with still, totemic clarity.”

  • Author / critic Darran Anderson

Solas Nua is a leading multidisciplinary arts organization based in Washington, D.C., that is dedicated to presenting contemporary Irish arts to US audiences. Solas Nua is kindly supported by the Government of Ireland’s Emigrant Support Programme, the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities and Culture Ireland.

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