Sir Denis Mahon Award-winner Jack McGarrity arrives with stunning solo exhibition
Royal Drawing School postgraduate and Sir Dennis Mahon Award-winner Jack McGarrity has arrived at its Shoreditch gallery with his stunning solo exhibition titled Something Happening Somewhere.
Running through to 15 September at the Royal Drawing Shool's Shoreditch gallery, Something Happening Somewhere is the culmination of what Jack has made with the assistance of the Sir Denis Mahon Award, which he won in 2021-22. The prize, which includes £10,000 to allow artists to continue their practice, has also provided Jack with studio space to complete this work.
Featuring over 50 paintings, Jack's solo exhibition sees him create new narratives that explore notions of the absurd, stillness and alienation in the modern world. By using papers as his medium, he also explores the idea of disrupting the surface of a painting by adding elements of collage as well as old discarded drawings.
"The award has enabled me to experiment with scale, materials and approaches to making work and has provided me with a year that has been incredibly beneficial to my practice," says Jack, who studied BA Fine Art: Painting and Printmaking at The Glasgow School of Art before coming to the School.
"This exhibition represents the culmination of a year's work in which I have continued my interrogation of quotidian scenarios as a means to explore space, atmosphere and surface."
Influenced by comics and films, Jack uses different panels within an image to communicate his narratives. A through-line of work acts similarly, and it is not uncommon to see similar threads woven through his drawings and into his larger paintings.
Jack adds: "There's a focus on viewing people through obstructions –through windows, or doors, or seeing small parts of a person. A bit like the way you see people in Tom and Jerry, that's how I've been thinking about it.
"It's always people in transition or moving between spaces. That idea of something being on the surface and then something being obscured by it. Multiples within one kind of scene."