The Hugh Lane, Dublin

Dublin City Gallery | Charlemont House, Parnell Square North
1 Dublin

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press release

Maud Cotter a consequence of - a dappled world June 2–August 8, 2021

Maud Cotter—Coffee Conversation: June 16, 11am–12pm, online, free

a consequence of – a dappled world is a solo exhibition by Maud Cotter of a body of work developed from 2015 through exhibitions in Limerick City Gallery of Art, 2018 and The Dock, Carrick-on-Shannon, 2019. It is now in its third iteration in Hugh Lane Gallery, produced amid the many turbulences brought on by COVID-19. The title is inspired by Pied Beauty, a poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins which celebrates the diverse and disparate nature of existence.

“Maud Cotter’s work sets up an exchange between the most humble and rudimentary of everyday objects and far-reaching abstract and conceptual models.”[1]

Using materials gathered from a variety of sources, her surreal assemblages involve a process influenced by a Duchampian concept of the readymade, whereby the artist elevates the ordinary and the everyday to an art form. Purposefully selected for their evocative potential, the objects she selects question their very materiality and their inherent narratives are made visible by the artist’s empathic sensibility. Cotter’s installations build an original and thoughtful relationship between objects and space, through which she creates a unique aesthetic language for the nature of things or, rather, what things want to tell us.

Cotter begins her inquiry for a consequence of – a dappled world by taking as reference point Nancy Cartwright’s book The Dappled World: A Study of the Boundaries of Science.[2] Agreeing with Cartwright’s argument for the impossibility of a unified theory of everything, the artist takes the view that variegation and variety are forces that bring greater understanding.

“I think we’re in an amalgamated, integrated and collaborative relationship with matter.”[3]

Cotter’s response to the gallery and liminal spaces of Hugh Lane Gallery combine an apparent simplicity with a powerful sense of joy in the materials of the everyday. In a new site-specific installation, titled slit, the artist inserts a number of hot-water bottles filled with plaster into the narrow vertical gap of a freestanding wall—envisaging the tension this creates between occupied and empty space.

We are delighted to present Maud Cotter’s a consequence of – a dappled world in the Hugh Lane Gallery, which is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with a new text by Jonathan Griffin, alongside texts by Michael Lightborne (2019), Sarah Kelleher (2018) and Ed Krčma (2016). Information on the supporting programme of talks and lectures is available on our website.

Maud Cotter lives and works in Cork. She is a graduate and Adjunct Faculty Member of the Crawford Municipal College of Art and Design, Cork. Cotter has lectured in Art and Architectural Colleges in Europe and America. She is co-founder of the National Sculpture Factory and a member of Aosdana. She is represented by domobaal gallery, London.

[1] Ed Krčma, from his 2016 essay “To Diagram without Stilling: On Maud Cotter's Sculpture.” [2] Nancy Cartwright, The Dappled World: A Study of the Boundaries of Science (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 19.
[3] Maud Cotter, “Plinth Politics: within an exterior,” lecture at Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin, November 13, 2019.