Artist Patrick Conyngham Exhibits At Down Arts Centre

Review: “The paintings of Patrick Conyngham remind me of Aboriginal evocations of the dreamtime, of Navaho sand paintings created by tribal Shamans. The works resonate with an unforced natural psychedelia, they are both the visions and the mind maps of an artist of deep sincerity.” Paul Yates (Poet/Artist/Filmmaker).


Patrick Conyngham is a self-taught artist living in County Monaghan. In this exhibition, Traces, the paintings explore the connections between the mythic world and the real world. They invoke from the past and aim to present a consciousness of that for us in the present. These intertwined layers of legend and history are something in which Downpatrick is rich, aiming to reinforce the connection between the place and the paintings and enable a greater universality.

[caption id="attachment_56922" align="aligncenter" width="540"]Artist Patrick Conyngham with his wife Siobhan at the launch of his Traces exhibition in the Down Arts Centre in Downpatrick. Artist Patrick Conyngham with his wife Siobhan at the launch of his Traces exhibition in the Down Arts Centre in Downpatrick.[/caption]

He said: “I work in mixed media using oils, acrylic, gouache, ink, pencil and felt tip on panel, board, paper and canvas, and even scratch into the medium for effect.

“Basically we are all on a journey through life and my work aims to try and capture the mystery of this reality. I use whatever medium I can to express myself, and here is no definite time I can say that a painting is finished. I could come back to one years later and work on it again. Colour is very important to me. It invokes certain, emotions and thoughts so my paintings tend to be very colourful.

“My visit to Downpatrick has been hugely interesting as I am amazed at the amount of old built heritage there is. I have found this very stimulating. Yesterday we went for a visit to Struell Wells and it was very atmospheric. This tremendous heritage is a huge asset to artists like myself who are challenged by the mystery of life.”

Patrick Conyngham lyrically explained: “There in the crucible of our emptiness Lies he space of our everythingness

Expanding and contracting in the in and out of infinity. We paint it so the remnant is registered, projected on the vast canvas of our lives.

It makes us in some way luminous to be seen in the tumultuous dark of our mystery, The scramble for definition etched on the plate of dreams.

We try to follow the as yet unmarked in the glow of the unknown. 

We have heard the murmur of the reflection in the waters of our everywhere, Deep in the rock pool of our ancestors, stirs the flesh of our

Longing to be subsumed in the pestle of our unknowability tuning our receptivity to awe.

Before the mountain of our longstanding variations of our many selves,

We are shrunk down to only this life and the smaller question that can be an aperture for vastness in the sky of our reason.

We are hammered and bashed gradually into beauty poured black and glistening on to the polished floor,

A spill of marbles in the halls of our childhood.

In plain sight possibility of becoming the pigment pulverised on the Stone of our on going.

Now the dawn. Now the dusk. We fill the spaces in between leaving impressions in the light

Revealing scratches on the surface of the accumulation of the scarcely registered sketches piling up in the backroom of our minds swiftly concealed by a layer of glistening fine dust.

No vacuum could lift this forgetting that drops as dramatically as a curtain into a theatre of our longing. Penetrated by quick bursts of a greater coherence snatched from the sticky grip of our slow dying to the glimmer of the day.

Sketched out on the strand and wiped away by the sea of all this being

We hear the whisper of our traces changing to an audible call… the wind changes direction.

The footprints fade in the sand of dreams. Nothing is there and it does not matter. No relic shall remain of all our labyrinths. Only what we think we have seen.

The fleeting glimpse of not existing disappears in the froth of our living leaving a stain on the sink in to another world.

It is said this earth is lifted up and then refreshed again, restored into the myriad patterns of gigantic cycles labelled with time but beyond it…

Just a spore, a faint shadow of the impossible.

A far finer climb in to the rarified air where there is no smidgen of anything except for the unbelievable scent of everything.


The exhibition opens from Friday 5 June to Saturday 27 June 2015. Time During opening Hours at Down Arts Centre. Price Free. Venue Down Arts Centre.  ]]>