Carl Doran , 1999
Carl Doran is originally from Co. Westmeath. He studied Art and Design in Falmouth, Cornwall and at Limerick School of Art and Design. He lives and works in Limerick where he is an active member of Contact Studios. Carl’s initial studies during his BTEC foundation in Art and Design in Falmouth, Cornwall gave him an insight into the myriad visual art disciplines and involved a lot of drawing which gave him a solid foundation from which to progress. He stayed in England for a further year before returning to Mullingar, Co. Westmeath. He continued his studies in Ireland, first completing a PLC course before moving on to a degree in painting from Limerick School of Art and Design. After graduating, he joined RAP (The Real Art Project), which was instrumental in setting up Contact Studios in Limerick. Evening In, one of the works in the Louth County Collection comes from a time when he was completing his degree and had been making a series of oil paintings centring around interiors, mostly through layering glazes, giving a feeling of depth and atmosphere. The space portrayed is the apartment he shared with his friend, fellow graduate and studio colleague, Dromiskin Artist Ciarán O’Sullivan. It is one of the first paintings he did on a palette, an idea that germinated through his desire to react to a readymade surface. In later works he has repeatedly used the surface of paintings themselves as the palette incorporated into the compositions. Melted coloured crayons are used here to give added texture which the artist feels add a sense of playfulness to the work. Table (set two) is from a series of Interiorscapes the artist made in 2001/2002. The title references theatre/film through the word ‘set’, and table settings for two, a kind of pun, and a reference to the thought process involved. It is an imagined space and the artist’s aim was to the combine pastel colours to create drama and atmosphere, while laying just enough content (a table and two chairs) to draw the viewer in, and create narrative tension, hinting at a story, alluding to the prospect of an incident. A lot of the artist’s work is about this attempt to gain the viewers’ interest initially in an image or scenario, and to ultimately explore both the narrative and formal qualities of the work. Discussing these works, Carl explained: “I am still fond of these works and feel there was a real sense of progress between the two – one couldn’t happen without the other. There is a leap technically between the two, but a similar aesthetic, and a similar intention. I believe in there being two ways of evaluating art – intention and execution, and with these two pieces there was a good balance in this vein.” Carl is currently based in Contact Studios, where he has been Chairperson for a number of years. He is working on a series called ‘Cats’ Tales’ which is a series of pure collages, oil paintings and drawings, begun when he befriended a stray cat (Cáit) on moving in to a new house. He has constructed tales based on her possible whereabouts (she went missing) as well as tales of her progeny. He balances his studio work with working on public art projects and exhibits his work on a regular basis. His advice to anyone thinking of making art as a profession? “Firstly, to find space to work in outside of your residence, make art for the right reasons, be nice to people and don’t overprice your work. The next challenge is to find your own routine, and to be happy with the volume/quality of the work made. Then to get your work shown is a major problem, and to be able to afford to present it. And of course, being able to have a reasonable quality of life with little means is perhaps the hardest challenge for an artist. It really is all about doing what makes you happy. I couldn’t imagine doing anything outside of art on some level.” Find out more about this artist here: www.carldoran.com
  • Carl Doran
  • Oil on board
  • Oil on board
  • 56 x 38 cm
  • Purchased from the Inside/Outside exhibition at The Basement Gallery,1999.