A Blank Canvas

Published by Alan Gould on

A Blank Canvas!

My brother-in-law Kieran Meegan is doing something very special next week. He will showcase his work to the Cork public at the Wilton Library from the 5th May. “Meekey” as he is affectionately known by his family and close friends always had an eye for detail. 

I would have grown up knowing him to be talented at just about anything he turned his hand too. But his love of Art has come to the fore in the past few years.

He has penned his thoughts on what will take place at the Exhibition. It is an interesting insight to the mind of a man whose passion and creativeness knows no boundaries. 

But as we know behind every great man is an even better lady. And he certainly has the backing of a little legend – his Grand-daughter Fiadh. 

Read his story below. Best of luck “Meekey” – well done.

Alan.

Growing up in Belfast, in the 1960s, is when I first developed a passion for abstract art. My launch pad was secondary school. My talent was inherited from my mother and the possibilities were endless.  Thankfully in recent years that spark has been reignited leading to me producing an entire collection of work of acrylic paint on canvas.

As mentioned, I grew up in Belfast but I have been living in Cork for a considerable time now building a wonderful family with my wife, the mother of our two (now adult) children and 2 beautiful grandchildren.  Shortly before Covid came bundling into our lives, I had the opportunity to exhibit some of my paintings at the fantastic O’Shea’s’ pub at the end of Barrack Street in Cork City.

My work was on display for one month and the showcase provided me with some priceless experience and feedback which I’ve incorporated into my latest exhibit.  Around the same time, I was approached by the Wilton Library who very kindly offered to exhibit my work at their premises for public display.

Not long after the offer was made the pandemic hit and all plans to host an exhibition were put on hold as we all entered the tough lockdown restrictions.  In a strange way the lockdown helped me focus my mind as we all searched for ways to fill what seemed like endless days of isolation.

During lockdown I seized the opportunity to create a series of paintings based on my practice of meditation – something I have been doing for many years.  Whilst meditating I see vivid colours in a whole array of patterns, blends, and shapes so I decided to capture these thoughts through paint and the result is “Meditation & Imaginings.”

The whole series was created in a tiny wooden shed in my back garden where I focused on colour texture in depth and was influenced not only by my meditations but also factors such as the temperature, light, the seasons and more.

My little back yard shed is not the ideal environment for painting, especially in winter as it has no heating system, but despite the cold and damp I would continue to paint using medium of acrylic paint on canvas.   My method is very start/stop and I continue with this approach until I am satisfied the piece is a true representation of what I’m trying to convey.

I often find myself grappling with the temptation of making little adjustments to a piece which sometimes can end in disaster with an entire work being ruined – such is my demand for true representation of my vision.

Having said that I will continue with that process of taking calculated risks as it sometimes pays dividends and can take a work to the next level in my eye.  As my collection grew and my risks began to pay off I noticed a strong interest in my work by family and friends who ultimately convinced me to display my work and share it with others who may appreciate it.

As the world slowly slipped back into “normality” I was lucky enough to be contacted again by Wilton Library to display my work at their premises for a one-month exhibition.  I was naturally delighted with this offer and can proudly say my work will be on display at Wilton Public Library from 5th May.

The exhibition is called “Meditations & Imaginings” which is a fantastic opportunity for me to display my entire collection of pre-Covid and lockdown work.  As this is only my second public display so I decided to enlist the help of my very bright and imaginative 5-year-old granddaughter Fiadh to help me name my paintings. 

Her vivid imagination was so helpful, and it was fascinating to see and hear her description of what she saw in these abstract works. The perspective of a child is wonderful to witness and that alone was what made all this work worthwhile.

I would like to thank Fiadh for her help, and I simply can’t wait to see her face when she sees the work I made displayed proudly and all labelled with the names she came up.  My method for creating these paintings was frustrating at times, even painful but when you create something that is yours, that you are satisfied with it, that you truly believe in… that’s what it’s all about. 

Kieran Meegan
Meadow Park Lawn
Ballyvolane
Cork.