Shane Berkery & Ruby Wallis at 126

Shane Berkery & Ruby Wallis at 126

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RUBY AND SHANE“With each it is different and the same” – 2×2 Part I
Shane Berkery & Ruby Wallis
13-28 August PREVIEW 12 August 7pm

For this exhibition, Shane Berkery & Ruby Wallis create a visual dialogue between painting and photography, two mediums that have long challenged and inspired each other in their attempts to capture experience. As Walter Benjamin suggested, the aura or originality of the artwork was lost with the reproducibility of the image, the aura or originality of the work. Film and photography constitute potent interventions into reality, directing us to specific stories and places, sometimes leaving others out. Shane and Ruby explore the tension between the two modes of image-making, between presence and distance, difference and similarity, seer and seen.

This exhibition is their collaborative response to a series of photographs of Shane’s grandfather, at work for Mitsubishi in Japan in the 1950s, as well as photographs from Ruby’s family archive in the 1990s. Their partnership emerges from a shared experience of migration: both artists moved to Ireland at the age of fourteen, Ruby from London and Shane from Japan, seventeen years apart. Tracing the effects of personal history, their individual work has reflected on the dilemmas of relocation and belonging. Their collaboration uses painting, photography, and film to explore the perceptual shifts between the exotic and the banal, document and fiction, history and the present moment.

In a series of paintings, Shane wanted to situate the viewer in a strange and nostalgic intermediate space between eastern and western memories. Ruby offers a meditation on this liminal space in two photographic slideshows, both performative, one based on Shane’s painting practice and the other based on her own focus on the body’s contact with the landscape.
This exhibition was developed through the 2×2 Project. A year long series of collaborative residencies, exhibitions and a publication which interrogate the idea of collaboration between emerging and established artists. It is funded by the Arts Council project award.