Interval One (Dream Pool), Ailbhe Ní Bhriain's fifth solo exhibition at domobaal gallery, is an exhibition of richly material works with a multi–layered meditation on time running throughout. In the main gallery a monumental tapestry fuses early photographic portraiture with imagery of underground caves and extinct animals; a large floor–based sculpture forms a mysterious, reflective tableau; positioned throughout the building, a series of abstract prints and objects evoke the world of the archive and the museum.
Ní Bhriain creates visual worlds that are at once precise and enigmatic, exact and elusive, drawing the familiar into a register of interruption and disorientation. At the core of her work is an exploration of dislocation, with historical displacement considered against the spectre of loss that haunts the contemporary imagination.
This exhibition forms the beginning of a new and evolving body of work, in which the artist connects ninteenth century legacies with narratives of the underworld and contemporary climate anxiety. It is defined by the deeply associative approach familiar from Ní Bhriain's film works, in which disparate elements come together to capture a dreamlike theatricality and an unsettled sense of past and future.
The exhibition's title is a reference to 'The Dream Pool Essays', a text by the Chinese polymath Shen Kuo in 1088. Included in this book's vast array of subjects are geological recordings that are considered to be the earliest observations of climate change.
Supported by Culture Ireland.