Both purchased from Domestication, an exhibition at The Basement Gallery in 2007.
“Domestication: the day-to-day script of my home life, at times fraught with stress and responsibilities, but captured in simplistic images of beauty and calmness.”
Emer Gillespie is from Kildare and studied at GMIT, Central Saint Martins and The London College of Communications. She has exhibited in Ireland, the UK and the US. She is currently living and working in the UK.
Read an interview with this artist here:
Emer started out studying business but realised after a year of study that it was not what she wanted to do and that her passion lay with art and found that that was what was most important to her. We asked her about her practice.
What advice would you give to anyone who is thinking of making art as a profession?
Primarily, it is difficult to survive financially as an artist. With more and more cut backs being made in the arts and people generally buying less art, I have had to do other work to support my career. Luckily, I have been fortunate to work within the visual arts sector, first as a visual art developer and now as a lecturer of photography here in the UK.
Visual art is an extremely satisfying and rewarding career, but do beware that it is a competitive and at times stressful career. Making contacts and getting your work out there is essential, as is staying up to date with contemporary art practice by visiting exhibitions and talks.
Is Gallery representation important for you?
As my work is personal in nature and is not commercial in anyway, selling the work is not important to me. I am more concerned with getting the work out there and exhibiting it both nationally and internationally.
How you do keep your profile visible?
Exhibiting your work is the best way to keep your career current and relevant. Applying to every competition and open submission is not advisable. Focus on those that would progress your career and those which have professionals on their panel that you want your work to be seen by. Keep a strong online profile; a good website is essential. It is the first point of contact that someone with have with your work. Keep your website up to date, and build up a contact list so that you can notify people about when and where your work can be seen.
Can you tell us about the work you have in our collection?
Ducks of Glory & Baby in Fridge are from the project Domestication, which I made during my postgrad at Central Saint Martins in London in 2006. I had finished my degree in Galway, but wanted to focus on Photography. As there was no postgrad in photography on offer in Ireland at the time, I decided London was a good place to move to in order to progress my career.
When I moved over to Brighton in the UK, it was just my daughter and I. I went from having a strong network of friends and family to knowing no-one. I was house bound and so started to shoot my home environment. They began to take the form of domestic still-lives, something my work has continued focus on to date. This body of work was a key shift in my practice which continues to grow. The work was exhibited across the country and received some great feedback.
Tell us a little about your current practice.
I went on to finish my full MA in Photography in London College of Communications. It was a fantastic experience and key to the progression of my work and practice. Since then my work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally including Exhaust me, Galway Arts Centre, Family Narratives, RUA RED gallery Dublin, FFWE, Photographers Gallery, London, Altered States, Foley Gallery, New York and Shifting Perspectives, OXO tower, Southbank London. In December 2012 my work will be shown at the V&A Museum of Childhood with the photographic collective, The Lyrical and the Ordinary, for 5 months. I am currently lecturing in photography at Sussex Downs College in Lewes.
Find out more about Emer’s work here: www.emergillespie.com