The art of the Ulster Museum at the heart of the autumn / winter program


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NI National Museums has announced an exciting art program for fall and winter.

The diverse range of exhibitions showcase local and international artists and explore deep and provocative themes such as identity, loss, isolation and love.

Art serves an important purpose, reminding us that we share a universal human experience, evoking deep emotions and allowing us to make connections and feel less alone.

Exhibits include: Mysterious Irish Muse by Tissot: New Acquisitions; Silent testimony; Thought of blue sky; New art, new themes, new acquisitions; Mainie Jellett (1897-1944): Translation and rotation and; Royal Academy of Ulster 140 e Annual exhibition.

Hannah Crowdy, curator of National Museums NI, said: “Through our collections, we hope to inspire and educate new audiences, including those who don’t typically visit an art exhibit.

“Everyone is invited to come and visit our space to see first-hand just how diverse and varied the exhibitions are, perhaps allowing people to discover a new appreciation for Impressionism or contemporary art. “

Exhibition at the museum until 2 sd January 2022, the focal point of Tissot’s mysterious Irish Muse: New Acquisitions is “Quiet” by James (Jacques) Joseph Tissot. A new museum acquisition, Quiet represents Kathleen Kelly, Tissot’s mistress, muse and the inspiration for some of his most famous paintings.

Quiet is exhibited with paintings by Cotes, Lavery and Orpen, which contrast the role of societal beauties and the experience of young women who lived a more fragile existence on the outskirts of mainstream society.



The museum also exhibits Silent Testimony, which is returning as part of National Museums NI’s 100 Years Forward program, marking the centenary of the partition and creation of Northern Ireland. The exhibition, which will run until January 2022, features large-scale portraits of internationally renowned artist Colin Davidson.

Each portrait powerfully portrays the personal experiences of the eighteen people who suffered loss during the unrest.

Colin Davidson said, “The silent testimony reveals the individual and collective suffering of these eighteen people in a way words cannot. All ostensibly have different identities but are bound by a unique and shared experience of loss. When creating the portraits, I wanted to convey each one first as a human being who had suffered from the conflict in Northern Ireland and silently articulate that experience.

“The shared trauma of these eighteen people remains a powerful reminder of our common humanity. “

French photographer Bernard Lesaing first came to Northern Ireland in 1975 and 1976, taking moving and insightful images of the country at the height of the conflict. He returned more than 40 years later to a very different political landscape. He again based his work on the people he met and their stories, capturing not only striking images but also collecting 21 personal testimonies. This fascinating look at Northern Ireland’s journey, through conflict to more peaceful times, is explored in the Faces and Places exhibition.

Thought of blue sky; New Art, New Themes, New Acquisitions is an exhibition that presents Blue Sky Thinking, 2019, by Patrick Goddard, a piece depicting 180 ring-necked parakeets created from recycled lead.

Acquired by National Museums NI 2020, with help from a grant from the Art Fund, the play addresses themes of migration, identity and the climate emergency, deliberately drawing on current discourse on human migration and border control, as well as the artist’s ecological concerns.

Blue Sky Thinking is on display with works from the Ulster Museum of International Significance Sculpture Collection, including Birdman by Elisabeth Frink, HOME by Willie Doherty and Silent Echoes, a sound sculpture by Bill Fontana.

Another artist on display is Mainie Jellet – she has been seen as the driving force that brought abstract art to Ireland and the exhibition explores her journey to this point and beyond, celebrating its impact and the placement of women. at the center of Irish modernism. Mainie Jellett (1897-1944): Translation and Rotation will be on display from October 29 to May 2022.

Jellet’s process is revealed throughout the exhibition, with highly regarded works included, alongside paintings and drawings on public display for the first time, showcasing the richness and richness of his short but prolific career and sharing the “Three revolutions” of his artistic practice.

The highly anticipated 140th Annual Royal Ulster Academy Exhibition runs from 29 October to 9 January 2022 and is a highlight of Belfast’s calendar of events.

Founded in 1879, the Royal Ulster Academy of Arts (RUA) is the largest and oldest organization of practicing visual artists in Northern Ireland. Its annual exhibition is a unique platform for renowned artists and emerging talents to present their works at the Ulster Museum.

Now in his 140 e year, the exhibition includes around 250 examples of painting, drawing, sculpture, photography and video. Some works explore topical themes such as isolation, social distancing, and survival in these strange times. Others share deep messages with hope, humor, passion and integrity.

Hannah Crowdy said: “The RUA exhibit is always a highlight for visitors, showcasing an incredibly diverse range of art and content. We are delighted to welcome the exhibition again, now in its 140 e year, and offer our space to local artists, known and less known, to give their talent a platform and an audience.

“We hope that visitors will enjoy all of the Ulster Museum exhibits over the coming months, and that our fall / winter art exhibition program will leave them inspired, with a new appreciation for the power that art has. to spark emotion and conversation. “

Entrance to the Ulster Museum is free.

Advance reservations are recommended for all exhibitions at the Ulster Museum. Tickets can be booked at www.nmni.com

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