Paul Gaffney | Perigee

  Wednesday 12 October –
Friday 18 November 2016

Perigee | Paul Gaffney

Exhibition dates: October 12 to November 18 2016

Artist’s Talk: Paul Gaffney will give a public talk about the making of the work on November 16 at 5pm. Admission is free, all welcome, book here

For the past number of years, Irish artist Paul Gaffney has been investigating different ways of experiencing and representing landscape. This exhibition features two recent bodies of work, which have been photographed entirely by the light of the moon.

Perigee refers to the point in the moon’s orbit at which it is closest to Earth. Walking through forest landscapes by daylight, Gaffney documented his wanderings using polaroids. Later, he re-explored some routes after nightfall, to photograph under the light of the full moon. Bathed in its soft otherworldly glow, the forest’s narrow steep valleys evoke a mysterious, psychological wilderness in what is, in reality, a highly managed man-made environment.

A related body of work, Stray, was photographed in a dense pine forest in almost total darkness in late 2014, and is exhibited here using multiple slide projectors. The dark immersive installation evokes an experience of being at the edge of one’s comfort zone and cautiously moving through a disorientating and constantly changing environment, where our visual sense is so limited that our other senses become extremely heightened.

Drawn with light that is barely perceptible to the eye, Gaffney’s photographs emerge out of intuition, coincidence, and an underlying longing for connection and stillness. And although it’s tempting to call them landscapes, they are created through different ways of knowing a place – ways that acknowledge the moving, feeling body, rather than the distanced and distancing eye, as the foundation of our experience. – Eugenie Shinkle, January 2016

Thanks: Perigee was developed with the support of Centre National de l’Audiovisuel (CNA) during an artist residency in Luxembourg from 2015 to 2016.


Artist Paul Gaffney spraying glue of the surface of his print in preparation for his exhibition PERIGEE

Artist Paul Gaffney spraying glue of the surface of his print in preparation for his exhibition PERIGEE

About the artist:

Paul Gaffney (b. 1979, Navan, Ireland) holds an MFA in Photography from the University of Ulster in Belfast, and a Diploma in Documentary Photography from the University of Wales, Newport. He was recently selected for the Arts Council’s ‘Next Generation Bursary Award’ 2016-17.

His acclaimed book, We Make the Path by Walking, was nominated for the Photobook Award 2013 at the 5th International Photobook Festival Kassel, shortlisted for the European Publishers Award for Photography 2013, and selected for several ‘Best Photobooks of The Year’ lists. His second book Stray was nominated for the MACK First Book Award 2015, and the Photobook Award 2016 at the 8th International Photobook Festival Kassel. Perigee will be published later this year.

His work has also been presented as solo exhibitions at the Centre National de l’Audiovisuel (Luxembourg), Flowers Gallery (London), Belfast Exposed Gallery, Ffotogallery (Cardiff), Oliver Sears Gallery (Dublin) and in group shows and festivals in the US, UK, South Africa, Ireland, Italy and China.

His work has been published internationally in print and online periodicals including Harvard Design Review, Creative Review, The New Yorker, European Photography, DU Magazine, Katalog, PaperJam, Source, Photomonitor and Landscape Stories.

Paul Gaffney is represented by Oliver Sears Gallery.