Noelle Gallagher


My practice is informed by architectural space, with the former medical school of UCD at Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin providing the source material for my current body of work. My visits to Earlsfort Terrace were triggered by a curiosity as to how the spaces had reinvented themselves since UCD’s move to the suburbs at Belfield. One significant change that caught my attention, was how the high ceilings of the former dissection room at Earlsfort which were designed to limit exposure to formaldehyde and the smells of the mortuary, now provide interesting acoustics for musicians of the National Concert Hall who rehearse in the space.


Dissection Room

In order to examine the discord between the neglected spaces at Earlsfort and their rich social history, I have chosen a visual language that works with the tension between the fixity of torn digital prints, and the chance movement of fluid oil paint. I feed the viewer’s hunger for recognizable imagery, yet also challenge them to see paint as just random marks on a surface as I merge the real, the imagined, and the recollected in my work.



A recent development in my practice is the movement away from exclusively wall-based work, as I experiment with destabilizing the aura of my paintings by showing them in a wooden box. Instead of being fed images from the wall, the viewers are empowered to discover the paintings for themselves. Although conceived from a stance of anti-preciousness, the paintings are shown in a well-crafted box that is not dissimilar to one which houses the good cutlery that is reserved for special events. This viewing process lends the experience a sense of occasion and immerses the viewer in the physicality of the work.

6 GallagherNoelle_Lecture Theatre, Earlsfort Terrace_Oil and digital print on linen on panel_ 30x30cm_ 2015



An honours graduate in Fine Art (Painting) from Galway, Noelle has exhibited in many group shows in Ireland including Tulca, Éigse, Rua Red, and The Claremorris Open. Her paintings have also been selected for curated members’ shows at artist-run spaces such as Ormston House, Limerick and 126 Gallery, Galway. She was a finalist in the 2015 international biennial neo:artprize exhibition in Bolton, UK and was selected for The Terrace Open, London, and The Open West exhibition in Cheltenham, UK. Solo shows include ‘Recollect’ which took place in June 2016 in association with the Galway University Arts Trust and a show curated by Describing Architecture in Powerscourt Townhouse, Dublin in 2015. She has received an Emerging Irish Artist Residency Award from the Burren College of Art and 126 Gallery, and an Individual Artist Bursary from Galway County Council in 2014 and 2016.

7 GallagherNoelle_Installation Shot from Claremorris Open

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