From Tuesday 9th November to Sunday 21st November 2010
I have lived in Dublin all my life and I was brought up a Catholic. As with most 'Catholics' of my generation Sunday mass was something we attended for the sake of our parents and also as a kind of social with friends. My parish church was Gardiner Street and at 11 o'clock on Sunday there was a singing mass which was popular with lots of local teenagers. But of course at a certain age mass became a chore, my parents themselves eased up on the church going and for a time there was a bit of a gap left in my Sunday socials.
One Sunday, years later, one of my brothers took me to McDaids pub, in Harry Street, and there I found a new religion, Live Music. The high priest was Peter Moore and the disciples included a medley of talented musicians. This was pre Celtic Tiger days and the congregation (audience) combined a mixture of wonderful Irish characters and a selection of foreign nationals. For me as an Irish person who had never been abroad this was a fantastic experience meeting people from different countries and cultures. I became addicted to this atmosphere of music, laughter, friendship, sharing and a few pints. This was a really fulfilling time for me as I met some incredibly inspiring people and formed some very strong friendships. It was an educational experience and I graduated with honours.
Things in Dublin changed with the Celtic Tiger and though the Sunday nights in McDaids have long ended this experience has held me in good stead and in some way I feel it was pivotal for my development as person and as an artist. Live music still plays a big part in my life and was my initial inspiration for this exhibition but as I progressed with the work I've realised that, as with the McDaids experience, the music was the catalyst but the people were the inspiration. My Groupie Degree helped me realise that most people enjoy interaction, recognition and inclusion. In Dublin and Bray, where I now work, I have met many people who continue to inspire and entertain me and this exhibition is a result of those past and some more recent encounters.