t: +353 1 222 5552
t: +353 1 222 5552
The Golden Bough suite, in Gallery Eight of Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane, began with a selection of work by artist Dorothy Cross. Entitled ‘LAND SCAPE’ it included the works ‘Midges’, ‘Iris’, ‘Thrush drawing’, ‘Finches’, ‘Endarken’, and ‘Foxglove’. This ensemble refers to land, to growth and decay and to the human in nature: ‘seasonal’ time and ‘life’ time.
A lying woman appears and disappears in a projected work entitled ‘Midges’. She seems dead or unconscious, her sudden resurrection and return to the state where she first appears is perhaps caused by the almost invisible presence of the biting insects. Placed at the opposite end of the gallery is a monitor showing ‘Endarken’. A tiny black spot appears in the centre of a romantic image of an Irish cottage and grows rapidly like the pupil of an eye.
Playing with the presumption of a flower to be symbolically female, ‘Iris’ is an older work of Cross’ taken from the Hugh Lane permanent collection and reworked to appropriate the installation of ‘LAND SCAPE’. The small root formation of the Rhizome is slightly exaggerated appearing phallic and cast in silver.
Three cast bronze ‘Finches’ lie as if in a natural history display. Part of them is made up of the cast from female genitalia isolated and attached to the delicate birds. ‘Thrush drawing’ made by a thrush that flew into a window and died is mounted on the adjacent wall.
A ‘foxglove’ flower cast in bronze with a set of human fingers that form five of the bells is seen in a display case. Cross tells the story of when she was a child “we were told never to place our fingers in a foxglove and then lick them or we would go blind.” A drug called digitalis is extracted from the foxglove and used as heart drug. If one ingests too much digitalis it can make one see only in blue and white.
Curated by Michael Dempsey. Assisted by Jessica O’Donnell.