12 – 30 January 2024
The Library Project, 4 Temple Bar, Dublin 2
Ailbhe Barrett / Maya Brezing / Niamh Flanagan / Margot Galvin / Des Kenny / Grace Ryan
Curated by Ria Czerniak-LeBov
Winner of Black Church Emerging Curator Award
Opening hours: Monday – Friday: 11 am – 6 pm, Saturday: 12 – 6 pm
Preview: Thursday 11 January 2024 from 6 – 8 pm
Black Church Print Studio is delighted to present Unlimiting the Edition, curated by Ria Czerniak-LeBov, recipient of BCPS Emerging Curator Award 2024. As contemporary print practices continue to expand beyond the boundaries of tradition, everything from the formal and material qualities of the medium, to the social and economic status of Print have become the subject of re-
evaluation. In the practices of Ailbhe Barrett, Maya Brezing, Niamh Flanagan, Margot Galvin, Des Kenny and Grace Ryan, it is the concept of the limited edition itself that is being expanded. Divorced from the rarity value system that governs the formal edition, the matrix’s potential to iterate and generate ad infinitum becomes an exciting prospect, one that allows these printmakers to build and fragment, collage and extract, tell stories and challenge existing narratives.
Across their practices, these artists explore a diverse range of themes and contemporary phenomena, in an equally diverse range of traditional techniques including etching, screenprint, paper-making and carborundum. What is visible throughout these works is a shared sensibility, one that acknowledges the complexities and contradictions of making art in unprecedented times. Climate crisis, gender identity, consumerism and the enduring, and all too human, search for a place to call home are thoughtfully and often, playfully explored through the hand-made, printed multiple. Unlike the definitive nature of the conventional print edition, these works embrace the speculative, iterative and exploratory potential of the medium, resulting in limitless configurations and re-imaginings. With its unparalleled capabilities for multiplication, printmaking offers a rich, process-driven vehicle with which to explore
the increasingly complicated times we live in.
For over the past four decades, Black Church Print Studio has provided support for professional artists and practicing printmakers. It continually strives to maintain and develop contemporary printmaking in Ireland. Black Church Emerging Curator Award is now in its 5 th year. This Award is designed to provide a platform and support for emerging curatorial research and presentation. To date, this exhibition programme has shown a keen sense of innovation and experimentation with print and expanded print practice. The exhibition venue is the ground floor gallery, The Library Project, located under the Black Church Print Studio.
My practice as both a curator and writer is rooted in printmaking, its position within the wider
contemporary visual landscape and the rarity value systems it so often conforms to. Print’s historical links
to early mass production, technology, craft and the democratisation of the Art image are unique to the
medium. Unlimiting the Edition is the culmination of an academic research project which focussed on the
widely accepted convention of limiting editions of hand-made, original fine art prints. In the wake of digital reproduction and online image saturation, the analogue, tactile and material processes embedded within printmaking have become sites of conceptual and technical exploration. Unlimiting the Edition features 6 printmakers, each of which engage with the printed multiple as medium. These practices complicate conventions, pushing Print beyond the limits of the edition.
Ria Czerniak-LeBov is an artist, writer and curator based in Dublin. She recently completed her MA Art in
the Contemporary World at the National College of Art and Design, Dublin, where she is also an assistant
lecturer. Ria is a full-time member of Graphic Studio Dublin, since receiving their graduate award in 2016.
Herwriting and curatorial practices focus on contemporary printmaking, collaborative print practice,
technology and value systems. Her paper Irish Printmakers in the Age of Digital Reproduction was selected and published by IMPACT International Print Conference (Bristol, UK) in 2022 and led to Ria’s curatorial debut Oscillation (Graphic Studio Gallery) in 2023. Her work has been exhibited widely including RHA, RUA, National Botanic Gardens, SO Fine Art Editions, Trinity College Dublin and OPW. As a writer, she has been featured in Printmaking Today, Pressing Matters and The Honest Ulsterman.
Ailbhe Barrett is a visual artist practicing in paint, print, drawing and photography. Originally from Co.
Limerick, she is now based in Dublin. Initially a landscape painter working mainly in oils, she later studied
printmaking in Limerick Printmakers and Graphic Studio Dublin and continues creating work in both paint
and print. She held her first solo exhibition Infusions in Graphic Studio Gallery in Dublin in 2017, and has
been included in many selected exhibitions. Her work is in many collections including Northern Ireland Arts Council, OPW, National Gallery of Ireland and the Museum of Literature Ireland, and was the recipient of the ESB Keating Award at the Royal Hibernian Academy in 2019. Recently, she held the solo exhibition Contemporaneity and the Elusive in SO Fine Art Editions in Dublin and the Hyde Bridge Gallery in Sligo 2022/23. Group exhibitions include Geomancy at IMPACT12 in Bristol in 2022, and the upcoming Kwaidan, which includes 40 selected artists, exhibiting in venues across Japan and Ireland in 2024/25.
Maya Brezing is an emerging Irish artist working and living in Dublin. She graduated NCAD in 2022 with a
BA (Hons) Degree in Fine Art specialising in printmaking. Her multi-disciplinary work looks at nature
reclaiming derelict spaces through the mediums of printmaking, photography and sculpture. She was
awarded the Black Church Print Studio Graduate Award 2022 and is currently a full time member. In
January 2023 she received the Fingal Recent Graduate residency at MART Gallery and Studios and
exhibited in the MART Awards show. Brezing has been involved in numerous group shows in Ireland and
the UK. These include Halftone Print Fair, Ironbridge Print competition and “The Ladder is Always There”,
curated by the Shell/Ter collective in association with ten emerging artists. Her upcoming exhibitions
include a three-person show in Ardgillan Gallery in April 2024. Brezing’s work is held in the Office of Public works, St. Vincent’s University Hospital and the DCU art collection.
Niamh Flanagan graduated from the National College of Art and Design, and is a member of Graphic Studio Dublin where she works as Programme Coordinator and Master Printer. Selected recent exhibitions include Dower House Gallery, Emo Court, (OPW), (2023), Kwaidan- Encounters with Lafcadio Hearn, Matsue, Japan (2023), Blickar mot Landscap, Galleri Helle Knudsen, Stockholm (2023), Thin Places of Escape and Return, SO Fine Art Editions, Dublin (2022), London Original Print Fair and Ink MIAMI (2022), represented by : Stoney Road Press, Dublin, Grafik fran Irland,(2020) at Galleri Helle Knudsen, Stockholm, Inside Worlds, (2017) SO Fine Art, Dublin and Collision, (2017) the Law Society of Ireland. Her work is in the collections of the OPW, The Law Society of Ireland, the British Library and the National Gallery of Ireland. Awards include Arts Council Mentorship Scheme, Travel and Training, RHA Graham Wilkinson Print Prize, Culture Ireland Grants. Residencies include Cill Rialiag Project, Lindart International Artists’ Colony, Slovenia, ‘Where Borders Meet’; Poland and Edinburgh Printmakers, Scotland. She has worked extensively in education, developing the Etching Programme at Graphic Studio Dublin. In 2013 she set up Mobile Print Project with Clare Henderson, an initiative that promotes printmaking through education in Ireland.
Margot Galvin is an artist living and working in Dublin. Her work explores ideas about place, home and
belonging. She uses psycho-geographical explorations of various locations to question how a ‘sense of
place’ or belonging is developed by how closely our current environment echoes our place of origin. These locations have varied from the Dodder river, the industrial landscape around Ringsend and the architecture of Dublin City. Other imagery draws on methods used to chart our experience of place. Some aspects evoke aerial photographs of topographical details, land masses and sea, while other details could be interpreted as ordnance survey maps and charts, seismic waves or weather map details. Margot graduated from NCAD in 2012 with a 1st Class honours degree in Fine Art print. She completed her Masters in Fine Art there in 2014 and is currently a member of ‘At Home’ artist group and The Black Church Print Studio, Dublin. She has exhibited in the RHA and RUA annual exhibitions, Cairde Visual, RUA RED Open, Galway Arts Festival, and more recently Draiocht ‘Making Art Print’ as an invited artist. Her work is held in AXA, OPW, Law Society of Ireland, Dean Hotel collection as well as many private collections.
Des Kenny is a multi-disciplinary artist from Dublin. He has been a member of Graphic Studio Dublin for
over twenty years, working in a wide range of printmaking techniques including screenprint, lithography,
etching and mono-print. His practice has also evolved to include sculpture, painting, photography and
digital media. He has exhibited widely, including solo shows at Solstice Arts Centre (2012), Draiocht Arts
Centre (2011) and group shows at Tallaght University Hospital (2008), Pallas Projects (2008), The Lab
(2006), Marketplace Arts Centre, Armagh (2005) and Watergate Theatre, Kilkenny (2005). Kenny has taken
part in several residencies. He was artist in residence at Draiocht Arts Centre in 2003 and at Prince of
Wales Drawing Studio, London in 2001.
Grace Ryan is a multidisciplinary artist based in Dublin. She recently graduated with a degree in Fine Art
Print from the National College of Art and Design in 2023. Since graduating she received the Black Church
Print Studio graduate award, as well as featuring in the RDS Visual Arts Awards in IMMA. Her work presents itself through the mediums of expanded printmaking, sculpture and installation. Indebted to the
idea of the hybrid as a vessel for transgression, her practice looks at themes of symbolism, female
subjectivity, mythology, gender roles and transmutation. Throughout Grace’s practice, she explores the
ways in which material culture and gendered objects shape art reception and can provoke sublime or
visceral experiences in viewers. Through purposeful displacement and altering of norms and aesthetics, the objects in Grace’s work are seen to upset the patriarchal systems in place. Her uncanny installations, invite the viewer to reconsider the boundaries of desire and disgust, as a mode of engagement and critique with social, gendered and material histories.