Green on Red Gallery


Lissadell Birdsong
Mark Joyce

  • 14 Nov - 22 Dec 2003

This was Mark Joyce’s fifth solo exhibition at the Green On Red Gallery and heralded Joyce’s return to the medium of paint.  For this show, Joyce exhibited small-scale abstract paintings which explore early modernist ideas of place, and the relationship of music to colour.

Lissadell is a reference to the house and lands in Co. Sligo, Ireland, where Mark Joyce used to take art students on field trips.  His own response to the area was recorded in copybooks and works on paper.  In the latter works, an identification was made with the place through the colours employed and they, in turn, equated with notes or the pitch of the native bird song.

In Joyce’s copybooks, the studies are organised using the feint blue grid as support - suggesting pages from a Bauhaus exercise. Here again Mark Joyce attempts to relate sound with location and to put a colour on that sound.  The work is partly influenced by poems from Dermot Healy's collection The Ballyconnell Colours (1992).  Also in Joyce’s studio, and an acknowledged influence, were Bridget Riley’s book,The Eyes’ Mind  (1999) and the recordings of Glenn Gould.  

There is a certain irony at work here as the artist is well aware of the impossibility of depicting a sense of place merely with paint.  Tony O'Malley and the St. Ives Group come to mind as artists who explored place through a modernist language of sparse colour, brushwork, scratched lines and colour rhythms.  In the works on paper, Joyce deliberately locates the works in an early modernist discourse of mark-making; specifically its elemental nature and those meanings that can be read into the marks. Joyce has remarked that Sophie Taeuber-Arp, Paul Klee and Ellsworth Kelly were also strong influences.  



  • For more information or purchase enquiries contact the gallery.

More Information

  • For more information or purchase enquiries contact the gallery.
  • Summer Berries (2003)
  • Acrylic on gessoed panel 40.5 x 30.5cm
Summer Berries (2003)
Rainthread 2 (2003)
Fossetts (2003)

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