‘not yet saved’ is an exhibition of new paintings by Mayo artist Jo Killalea. She draws inspiration from the local landscape, heritage and social history, with paintings that are overlaid with a global outlook and sensitivity to connections. The title ‘not yet saved’ refers to the ongoing tradition of saving turf by cutting and drying peat, and the impact of this on the wider climate and ecosystems crisis. The individual paintings subtly convey a sense of the challenges of environmental sustainability, and are understated in their tone and execution. By choice of colour palette, motifs and patterns, the artist pays homage to the cultural and ecological importance of the bog, and highlights its relevance as a metaphor for a disappearing way of life.
Jo Killalea graduated with a first class honours degree in Fine Art from GMIT Mayo Campus in 2019 and a bursary award enabled her to spend two weeks in residence at Ballinglen Arts Foundation in February 2020. There she she began work on these paintings, so it is entirely fitting that they are now on show at Ballinglen Gallery.