Triptix: expressions of art made by three Limerick painters

Victor Bradshaw at Central Buildings, 51a O'Connell Street, July 1-14
Victor Bradshaw at Central Buildings, 51a O’Connell Street, July 1-14

LOCAL artists who are amateur, but gifted and highly professional in their approach and practice, get a poor shake when it comes to exhibition space. For years Sadhbh and Eoin Lyons accommodated amateur and professional classes at The Gallery (defunct) on Bedford Row.

Members of that arty family report their devastation at this loss of attractive street-front retail space.

Onwards and forwards for three of them: Ronnie McKnight, Victor Bradshaw and Jim Carroll. Together they bring their own works for group show under the ‘Triptix’ pun at Central Buildings at Christ Church, 51a O’Connell Street, July 1-14.

Their works will open out to the public this Friday July 1 at 6pm. We are all welcome to an expected 30 or so highly individual pieces representative of their talent and belief system.

Perhaps Victor couches the initiative best: “We are friends for a long time and I appreciate their style – it’s different from mine – but I do like their work. I always work with oil and generally all the art I do is about Ireland at the end of the 19th century and early 20th century, people going to markets on donkeys and carts, working in the fields”.

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One of three American themed works thus far from McKnight, celebrating the uniting themes of music and poverty and sustenance
One of three American themed works thus far from McKnight, celebrating the uniting themes of music, poverty and sustenance

Victor Bradshaw is influenced by French artists of the early 19th century, brilliants such as Jean Millet, Léon Lhermitte and Jules Breton, “exceptionally good painters”. He is drawn to their regard for the common man and Millet “who started to show what life was really about, the poverty, people suffering in the fields”.

Hark unto Ronnie McKnight, a musician who works in the media of oils, acrylics, glazes, layering and so on, tapping into a different vein of nostalgia. “For me it’s the story under the paintings. What I’m doing at the moment is not very commercial, a series on American music as I love the blues, love music, love the banjo and these three finished paintings so far are about how the people were held together by poverty and music”.

Ron is going to continue the burn until burn-out. While other paintings of his are for sale in Triptix, not this American series in progress.

The Third Man is Jim Carroll who is drawn to acrylic’s properties and typically, canvases that are medium to small. “I like to use the palette knife and brush, according to what comes to mind” in his search to create “something that pleases the eye.

Triptix's third man, Jim Carroll who works principally in acrylic paint
Triptix’ third man, Jim Carroll who works principally in acrylic paint

“I’m trying to introduce more colour now as I work a lot with blacks and whites, sometimes with the brush, sometimes with the palette knife – which gives great freedom in not being constricted by detail”.

Look to Central Buildings into mid July to appreciate their techniques and perspectives in this venture shouldered on mutual respect, connecting outwards through their carefully wrought canvasses.