Chris O'Brien Shanahan

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Press Review

Bealtaine - Daughter cobs
punchinello garter lane 2009
installation, with chris and anne
oren little

photos Cecilia @ CCImages

Boundary Lines at Solstice : Munster Express online - Review: By Liam Murphy. Published on Friday, January 7th, 2011

The exhibition of new work at The Granary - Boundary Lines At Solstice - was such a boost of light pre-Christmas by an artist who challenges with her work, her vision of the world, but this time there was a sharing of colour, of light, of hope and the very patterns of our existence. I saw the work on the morning of the shortest day when there was a pinkish tone to the sky - a true solstice day in the deep mid-winter.

Chris O'Brien Shanahan shows the viewer that boundaries are as natural things - hedges, water’s edge, a charcoal treeline, roads, contours, pathways. The work and the artist seem at one with the environment, like a natural protection in a fascination with patterns, be they
photographic patterns, bogland patterns or a clever collage of paper.

Craters, bogs, fields, a wooded track in Australia are all part of a natural pattern.
Several times she uses and repeats an off-shaped heart, an impression that suggests Daughter as a vivid green shooting growing shape, or Mother as autumn golden but still as defining as the seasons that shape and define our lives.

She returns to Fenor Bog as ancient polace, a repository and recreates patterns that seem modern and timeless like a child's paper chain of possibilities.

Punchinello : Munster Express - Friday, 7 August 2009, by Liam Murphy

At face value, the exhibition Punchinello, at Garter Lane Theatre, is aimed at children as part of their exciting pre-Spraoi series of family events, SprÓg. But you would miss a fine fun and progressive art experience. All the way in from the street there are colourful flower patterns from Spraoi in the Park, creating a visual thrill and huge Punch and Judy heads adorn the foyer and entrance to the gallery. Recycling seems to be a theme in the arts this year with Galway featuring reheats and repeats, and Kilkenny in a similar vein.
No matter … in the gallery, the nature conservation work of Chris O’Brien Shanahan, sets a beautiful tone with a Walkway and Weave montage. Gabriella Eviston has a selection of acrylic on board around the theme of Wind. Joe Moran has some cast bronze small heads and two fantasy sculptures from scrap. Steel Dog used car bumpers and bicycle parts as did Bird Skrapparts to create a great talking point. Philip Cullen has created wonderful cut-outs in a carton style to give a dancing effect. Ben Hennessy’s Lost Ark work used video/digital imagery on a screen to present a wonderful exciting set of expressive images. In front of the screen is an impressive big Buddha Bag to sit into. Ben would make a splendid illustrator and it is a great experience to sit and enjoy the screen, especially the Two Headed Giraffe, Lost Animal and an amazing Boy With The Moon On a Red String. This exhibition runs until the end of August and it is a joy to enjoy.

Municipal Art Shows, Munster Express - Review: Friday, 28 November 2008, by Liam Murphy

The Chris O'Brien Shanahan show, Dreamcatcher, at the Index Gallery, is an excellent mixed media event in a busy space. Work that draws on similarities between places like Australia and Fenor, gives the casual viewer an experience of the dot style of Aboriginal art in three studies, DREAMING BENEATH THE WILLOW, with its chalky tree and rich dot pastels. Natural patterns attract Shanahan's attention and that is evident in skylines and boglands as in FENOR WEAVE. A beautiful photographic book reproduces a most varied study of Fenor Bog - a book that just cries out for a publisher to bring the work to a larger audience. The contrasts in two TRAMORE SKYLINES catch, not only the dreams and possibilities of summer, but the colder resonances of winter in a favourite place.
GOING INTO THE ISLAND is a site specific central space featuring a pattern of stones and shells that is invitingly tactile and to reposition a stone would not wreck the universe. This piece has grades of detail and subtle earth tones.

Munster Express Review of Festival | LIVE Art, IMAGINE Arts Festival, work shown at Greyfriars

  Bealtaine: Daughter 2010 | punchinello 2009 | artists Chris Nwoke and Anne Murphy | artist Oren Little |
  © Chris O'Brien Shanahan 2006- 2014, all images, paintings, photographs © Christine O'Brien Shanahan