Thursday, November 24, 2022

Contemporary Irish artist Peter Burns will exhibit a new body of work he created during the pandemic at Claremorris Gallery in Mayo from Saturday next. This forthcoming solo exhibition is a great opportunity to see and purchase work by an artist very much on the rise.

Following a long line of solo and group shows, a number of chance encounters on Instagram has propelled Burns onto the international scene. During the pandemic, he was commissioned by a high profile American collector to create nine enormous paintings which he painted over the two year period.  Before entering the philanthropist’s private collection, this important body of work will be exhibited in the Royal Hibernian Academy in February 2023. Alongside this commission, Burns also found the time to create the Ad Astra series of paintings which will be shown for the first time at Claremorris Gallery.

Ad Astra, which means ‘to the stars through hardship’, reflects Burns’ interest in Sci-Fi, art history, and myths and legends. While some are small in scale, all 20 pieces burst to life and draw you in with waves and layers of paint in full colour applied in a distinctive technique influenced by the artists training in sculpture. Jim Smyth in the Irish Arts Review writes that “looking at Burns’ paintings one is reminded of fairy tales.  These works are illustrated with exotic and brilliantly coloured landscapes. They also have a dislocation of scale, where the miniature human figures seem lost and homeless.

Owing to his increasing international profile, Burns will embark on a series of important exhibitions in 2023 in the UK, Italy and the US.

Burns has exhibited with Claremorris Gallery for many years, having shown there while still in college. Gallery owner Rosemarie Noone, who has an uncanny intuition for art trends and identifying emerging artists, sees Peter as an artist to invest in right now.

“It’s an exciting time for Peter. It’s been a pleasure and a privilege to curate his work over the years and watch him develop and be recognised for the exceptional artist that he is,” she said.

Ad Astra opens Saturday, November 26 at Claremorris Gallery until December 10. Gallery hours 1-6pm, Wednesday to Saturday or by appointment. For more see

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