An open-ended enquiry – in/elegant formalism

An exhibition by

Colm Desmond

Opening Saturday 20th March at 6pm

the exhibition continues 21st – 29th March  open 12pm – 6pm

Colm will give an Artist Talk on the 30th at 1pm


Colm Desmond’s practice is located at the intersection of formalist, post-minimal and object-based art. It relates to a critical discourse around materiality and ‘objecthood’ which has influenced certain strands of conceptual art practice. In the process, this work explores issues of materiality and form with an ongoing concern for what might constitute a relevant contemporary aesthetic.

Colm Desmond has exhibited ‘in/elegant formalism’ in both photographic and 3D formats since graduating from NCAD in 2008 with an MA Art in the Contemporary World. His exhibition at the Basement Project Space will continue his investigation into the possibilities for experimentation with found material. Assemblages of randomly sourced, recycled materials are displayed in mirrored ‘vitrines’ to create tensions between various types of degraded forms sourced in the urban environment, and the transformation of these forms through their physical reflection. Using an adaptable collage process, the content is randomly arranged, yet consciously ordered, hinting at an underlying instability and anxiety of process. The works therefore create a kind of degraded transcendence within a formalist aesthetic.


Colm Desmond holds a BA in Fine Art, IADT Dun Laoghaire (2004), and an MA Art in the Contemporary World, NCAD, Dublin (2008). In 2009 he held a solo exhibition of photographic work at The Front Lounge, Dublin 2 (March 2009) and an installation of display ‘vitrines’ at Pallas Contemporary Projects, Dublin 7 (July 2009), as part of their independent summer programme. He created the stage design for a new play by Dublin writer Oran Ryan, at Ranelagh Arts Festival (September 2009). He has participated in joint and group exhibitions in Dublin (Broadstone XL Space with Anne-Marie Hayes in 2008) and thisisnotashop (MA group show) in 2007. He has exhibited in several open submission exhibitions in Ireland, including Claremorris Open (2009), Eigse Carlow  (2008), Iontas Small Works Sligo (2007), ev+a Limerick(2005),  and C2:1995-2005 at the Crawford Municipal Art Gallery, Cork (2005)., 01-4900332, 086 3830714,


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