A Laois artist and teacher has an exciting solo exhibition in Abbeyleix and works in an open call exhibition in the Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Mountmellick woman Ruth Williams has created the paintwork exhibition in Abbeyleix library which runs for the month of December into early January.
Her work is an accumulation of pieces created over her four years spent in Limerick School of Art and Design.
Ruth, who now teaches in St Mary’s CBS Portlaoise, spoke about her pieces and the meaning behind them.
“Our urban lives have almost created a sensory curtailment that has distanced us from the natural world.
Nonetheless, woodlands and national parks have always been a common place that I find myself encountering everywhere I travel.
“Using the tree as a motif in my paintings, I wish to provoke an emotional connection from my audience. I wish for the viewer to be pulled back down to the soil.
Ruth spoke about the importance playing outdoors had on her childhood.
“For me the image of the woodland awakens an inevitable fascination inside and revisits memories of my childhood summers.”
“Exploring the ruins of an old house in nearby Garryhinch Woods, attempting to climb the trees, picking wild flowers, and envisioning the magical creatures that lived there. This firm connection to all things nature is the origin of my artwork.”
Ruth added that it is important to her that her art is colourful and enjoyable, as there is, ‘a lot of gloomy art in today’s world’.
“For me the colours symbolize an origin of life. I intentionally give the trees and surrounding woodland a subtle anthropomorphic quality that gives it a somewhat compelling presence, almost forgetting the realm of man.
“There is a lot of gloomy art in today’s world and in my opinion my work has a certain type of ambiance within it that creates a sense of joy. Fundamentally there is a spiritual dimension to the work as the trees come to life through the eyes of our inner child.”
Inspired by the work of Peter Doig whose landscape paintings hold an otherworldly atmosphere, Ruth’s work is a familiarity seductive beauty and dreamy melancholy.
Ruth’s paintings are available to buy for different title prices and on display in Abbeyleix library until January.