Sean McGuill was born in Dundalk, Co. Louth and is currently based in Cork, Ireland. He graduated from Limerick School of Art & Design in 2018 with a degree in Printmaking & Contemporary Practice. After graduating, he completed a three-month residency at An Táin Arts Centre, Dundalk and held his first solo exhibition ‘The Great Filter’ in Droichead Arts Centre, Drogheda in November 2019. He is a member of Cork Printmakers and the National Sculpture Factory – working with a variety of processes such as screen print, monotype, painting and mixed-media. Sean’s work has been exhibited in a number of locations across Ireland and internationally, including the 190th RHA Annual Exhibition and the Halftone Print Fair in Dublin. His work has been selected for various awards including the Arts Council Covid-19 Response Award, and the John Shinnors Selection at the 2017 LSAD Drawing Awards. He was also shortlisted for the 2017 Hennessy Portrait Prize for his self-portrait and included in the exhibition at the National Gallery of Ireland.
My work draws upon cultural artefacts, everyday objects and found imagery from the internet, as a means to understand the role of images in an overly saturated and constantly changing visual culture. Often focusing on opposing forces between order and chaos, factual and absurd, analogue and digital, or abstract and figurative, my work compares the ideologies and aesthetics of seemingly random image systems. The source material is deconstructed, cropped, and layered using various processes including expanded printmaking, painting, digital and collage, sometimes in combination. This approach echoes the incongruous variety of online imagery and considers ‘slow’ processes such as drawing as an antithesis to the knee-jerk reactions and viral trends that are prevalent in today’s media landscape, in which images are consumed and discarded at an equal rate. Through this approach, my practice aims to question the limits of online dissemination and reproduction, and the role in which context plays in the understanding of meaning, while allowing space to develop an experimental visual language exploring mark-making and materiality.