Archive for March 24th, 2010

Review: Black and Tans at the Kevin Kavanagh Gallery

24 March 2010

Contributed by Frank Bouchier Hayes

As a child, I spent quite a lot of time playing toy soldiers where the Germans were always victorious over the British and Americans because their uniforms were so attractive to my juvenile imagination. Such childhood play forms the basis for a collection of paintings by Mick O’Dea currently on display at the Kevin Kavanagh Gallery in Dublin. O’Dea’s work is derived from photographs of combatants and politicians taken during the Irish War of Independence and attempts to understand the conflict from the British perspective. Those wishing to preview the exhibition can access a few images from the gallery website, or pick up a copy of the latest issue of the Irish Arts Review. Catherine Morris contributes a contextual essay available at the gallery to the intriguing collection of 26 portraits entitled ’Black & Tan’ which greatly assists one’s enjoyment and appreciation of the fruits of O’Dea’s research.

I would however take slight issue with a comment she makes about the men wearing “their guns in a way that anticipates John Wayne in the cowboy movies”. Read more