2017-11-22-2018-10-15 --- 2018-10-15 10:31:15--18
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LOT :210
Paddy McCann (b.1963)
Estimate EUR : €1,000.00 - €1,500.00
Auction Date : 22-11-2017


Paddy McCann (b.1963)

Green Door

Oil on canvas, 59 x 48.5 (23¼ x 19¼)

Provenance: The Eamonn Mallie Collection


Almost twenty years ago I asked Belfast College of Art lecturer and painter Neil Shawcross if he could recommend a young painter to me whom he deemed to be a talent. He instantly mentioned the name Paddy McCann, a fellow lecturer in Belfast College of Art. Neil in his usual low key manner added "yes - he's a painter."


Some time later I walked into the Fenderesky Gallery, located then in South Belfast, to witness an exhibition by McCann. I bought four works and phoned my collector colleague Dr. Robin Hyndman who arrived and bought two pieces and who still laments the fact that a painting which included a rainbow in its composition had already been sold.


McCann, a South Armagh man is a deeply sensitive and intellectual artist with a profound awareness of the nuances of the world in which he lived and works. 'The Troubles' have subliminally permeated much of his output with 'watching' a big theme.


'Watching' was a way of life in South Armagh when Paddy was growing up - watching for the dole man snooping, and of course with the arrival of the British army in the border area the 'watching' was a two way process .... soldiers watching the locals - the locals watching the soldiers. Even today 'watching' is in the border psyche - locals keeping an eye out for the police or Customs officials - summed up in a familiar country song which goes like this Ǫ. "use the code of the border road - flash the lights at me."


McCann's watchers are usually well embedded in his landscapes and quite often only emerge when one starts to live with his paintings.


The death at the hands of British soldiers of twelve year old Majella OHare, close to Ballymoyer Church in August 1976, had a huge impact on McCann who has returned again and again to this subject.


McCann is not, however, an insular painter. He is familiar with art currents across the globe. He is a big follower of the Canadian born artist Phillip Guston who settled into an abstract form of art making in New York. 'House with Green Door' in this vein has been won out of everything that seems wrong and yet, is right - executed with insouciance. The hint at a half door in a windowless house pulls us back to the simple rural life of yesterday. The half door kept the children in and the hens out in those days.


A developed eye cannot be but impressed with the use by McCann of four colours, black, white, green and pink. These colours are not normally bedfellows and yet they feel at home in this little house.


Les modes passent - le style est éternel!


Eamonn Mallie

Hammer Price : €2,800.00
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