Gerard Byrne



 Swimming, Grand Canal



Gerard Byrne is a local artist who is known for the "plein air" style of painting where a canvas is completed exclusively in the open air. He can often be found at the Dublin docklands with large canvasses, up to six feet in height. This is very unusual for an Irish artist, as unpredictable weather often discourages "plein air" painters from attempting large-scale works. Byrne is especially interested in the play of light and shade, and believes that outdoor work is essential for completing studies of shadow. He will paint any scene, as long he can discover interesting surfaces and reflections. His subjects are prolific: including city scenes, still life, rural landscapes and figurative studies. He works in both charcoal and oils.


Byrne pursued his artistic career later in life because he had been encouraged to take up a trade in his youth, qualifying as an electrician. However, painting remained a life-long passion for Byrne. He had been exposed to art from an early age, and his childhood visits to his great-grandfather's attic-studio are among the most vivid recollections of his youth. Eventually he decided to travel to Germany where the changes in East Berlin had galvanised an exciting underground art movement. Byrne was initially apprehensive, and even considered returning home, but was fortunate enough to meet an event's organiser who was desperate to find artists for an exhibition that had recently been cancelled. Byrne was provided with "a dingy apartment overlooking a cemetery", but had nevertheless finally achieved his dream of becoming a professional artist.


Since then, Byrne has travelled the world and his success as an artist has enabled him to leave his electrician's job. His work is known for its arresting contrasts between sharp, crisp outlines and impressionistic horizons. He is able to capture the fine detail of a single object illuminated by light, whilst also giving a sense of total movement in an array of shapes, such as the shimmering of wind-tusselled leaves across a branch. He particularly enjoys working in Dublin's botanical gardens and his work here captures the array of jewel-like colours among the gardens' most exotic flowers. In addition to this, Byrne's work includes an impressive "Raw in black and white" collection of street scenes from Dublin, New York and Paris. Here, his emphasis on composition and line captures the distinctive architecture of each city and the bustle of its street life.


Byrne currently resides in Dalkey Village: a location that he finds to be particularly inspiring.





1 products in this category, displaying products 1 to 1.

Gerard Byrne Gerard Byrne
Swimming, Grand Canal
Oil on Board, Framed
48cm x 71cm (19" x 28")

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