DUBLIN, IRELAND.-A series of exhibitions by leading Irish and international artists, including Jasper Johns, Laurie Anderson, Dorothy Cross and Tony OMalley; special shows to celebrate the work of the White Stag Group and to mark 50 years of collecting by the Contemporary Irish Art Society, and the publication of a full-colour catalogue of IMMAs Collection are all part of an exciting and wide-ranging programme for 2005 at the Irish Museum of Modern Art announced today (Tuesday 18 January) by the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Mr John ODonoghue, TD. Plans for the coming year also include a number of exhibitions by highly-regarded younger artists, many being shown for the first time in Ireland; an exhibition of Latin American art from one of the largest private collections in Europe; a new schools programme in association with the Abbey Theatre, and a series of lectures on developments in contemporary music since the 1950s.
Speaking at the launch of the programme at IMMA, the Minister ODonoghue said: I should like to begin by congratulating everyone at IMMA on a highly successful year in 2004, which saw visitor number grow to 350,000, the highest in the Museums history. I am pleased to say that the programme for 2005 looks equally exciting. The first opportunity to see a large-scale show by such a ground-breaking figure as Jasper Johns is something to which, I am sure, the public will respond with enthusiasm; as they will to the first major Dorothy Cross survey exhibition and the Tony OMalley retrospective.
The Museums acquisitions policy has come in for much favourable comment recently, and the Collection catalogue - for which my Department was pleased to provide a special subvention - and the accompanying exhibition will be awaited with particular interest. I should also like to commend IMMAs ongoing work, through its Education and Community and National Programmes, in bringing its resources and expertise to people and places, all too often marginalised from such activities. The level of creativity and hard work which this programme represents deserves our support, and I am very pleased to have been able to increase the Museums current funding to 4,800,000 this year, an increase of 22% on 2004. From what I have seen of their plans for the year ahead, we can rest assured that they will make good use of it.
Commenting on the programme, IMMAs Director, Enrique Juncosa, said: We are very pleased again to announce a whole array of diverse international exhibitions for 2005. These include an important survey of recent works by the American painter Jasper Johns and exhibitions by highly-praised younger artists like Mark Manders (The Netherlands), Pierre Huyghe (France), Franz Ackermann (Germany), Jaki Irvine (Ireland) and Fred Tomaselli (USA). I would also like to underline the importance of women artists in the programme, with substantial mid-career retrospectives of the work of the Americans Laurie Anderson and Catherine Lee, and of the Irish artist Dorothy Cross. Other Irish shows this year include a survey of Tony OMalley, an historical exhibition on the White Stag Group, and a celebration of the work of the Contemporary Irish Art Society. In addition, the largest exhibition of the year will present a survey of current Latin American art with works by artists such as Doris Salcedo, Santiago Sierra or Guillermo Kuitca.
We are especially happy to announce the publication of the long-awaited, fully-illustrated catalogue of the collection this Spring. This was postponed from last year to include several important acquisitions which we managed to secure in 2004, including the works by James Coleman. The different Education and Community Programmes, and the National and Artists Work Programmes will, of course, continue.
Finally, I would like to say that 2005 will be quite a musical year. Beside the Laurie Anderson exhibition, the celebrated composer Kevin Volans will give a series of lectures on contemporary music, discussing among other things Jasper Johns connections with John Cage. We will also be presenting a concert of the work of the Irish composer Brian Boydell during the White Stag exhibition.
Exhibitions - The programme begins with one of the undoubtedly highlights of the year - the first large-scale exhibition in this country by the iconic American painter Jasper Johns (9 February - 24 April). The show presents some 90 paintings, prints and drawings created since 1983, a period of significant development in the artists work. This will be followed by an exhibition of the work of another celebrated American - performance artist, musician, writer and visual artist Laurie Anderson (17 February - 2 May). The Record of the Time will set out the different, and fascinating, stages which led Anderson from her first creation in the 1970s to her latest audio work.
A further three new shows open shortly after this, beginning with the first exhibition in Ireland by the French artist Pierre Huyghe (23 February - 15 May), whose film works explore themes of reality and fiction, history and memory. Some 20 paintings by the New York artist Fred Tomaselli, made using a dazzling array of materials, opens on 9 March (until 19 June), while an exhibition of installation-based sculpture by the younger-generation Dutch artist Mark Manders can be seen from 16 March (until 29 May).
Completing the line-up of international artists for 2005 will be a mini-retrospective by the American sculptor Catherine Lee (22 June - 4 September), a display of installations and wall paintings by the German artist Franz Ackermann (20 July - 23 October) and three film works by Isaac Julian, one of Britains pre-eminent contemporary filmmakers, which will be shown in sequence from 21 September to 15 January 2006.
In addition, the Daros Collection of Latin-American Art, part of one of the most important private collections of contemporary art in Europe, will be shown from 5 October to 8 January 2006.
Irish and Irish-based artists will have a particularly strong presence in 2005. The first large-scale survey of the internationally-acclaimed Irish artist Dorothy Cross will open on 25 May (until 11 September). Comprising sculpture, installation, performance, photography and film, it will review her work from the 1980s to date. This will be followed on 26 October (until January 2006) by a major retrospective of the work of the much-loved Irish painter Tony OMalley, now recognised as one of the leading Irish artists of his time, who died in 2003.
The work of the White Stag Group, which comprised a number of British artists who brought a new vitality to the Irish art scene in the 1930s and 40s, will be shown from 6 July to 2 October, while from 17 November to February 2006 IMMA will join forces with the Contemporary Irish Art Society for an exhibition celebrating 50 years of the societys important work in collecting art and endowing public institutions.