Oscar Fouz LopezDon't look back baby, 2019
Oil on canvas
100 × 120 cm
The work of Oscar Fouz Lopez is informed by mythological stories and their synthesis of metaphors and philosophical teachings. According to Carl Jung, myths are embedded in the human psyche in the form of archetypes. Lopez's paintings focus on the Hero archetype who endures personal challenges, serving as a metaphor for self-improvement.
The starting point for the work is the Indian myth, Bhagavad Gita, which was told in a 700-verse Sanskrit scripture. The myth tells the story of a hero, Arjuna, who had to fight his own family for a stolen kingdom. He struggles intensely with both obligations: being faithful to the crown and to the love for his family. The hero must make the best of this compromising situation that does not lead to a good outcome either way.
Lopez was touched by the story of Arjuna because he feels that in these troubled times, doing our best can be a struggle. Lopez’s heroes function as a metaphor for the ordinary person who lives an ordinary life, but like the hero, still has to make difficult decisions. In a way we can all see ourselves reflected in Arjuna’s war, fighting to live with integrity. Lopez depicts this struggle in a light and humorous way.
Oscar Fouz Lopez is a Spanish-born artist who lives and works in Dublin. His work has featured in group exhibitions such as, Insider Art (2016) in MCE, Belfast, Everything is in Everything, (2019) in the Sirius Arts Centre, Cobh, and Chrysalis, (2021) in the Molesworth Gallery, Dublin. He was also selected for The Annual Show at the Royal Hibernian Academy in 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021. Recent solo shows include, Pickled Chimp Ears held at Pallas Projects as part of its 2018 programme, and Don’t Look Back, Baby, (2020) in the Molesworth Gallery, Dublin. He graduated with a BA in Fine Art from DIT in 2010 and was shortlisted for the Most Promising Graduate Award at the Talbot Gallery the same year. Lopez also holds an MFA in painting from NCAD (2016) and was the Tony O'Malley artist in residence for 2018/19. His work is held in public and private collections, including those of the OPW and Trinity College, Dublin.
Colin Crotty, Eithne Jordan, Eleanor McCaughey, Fergus Martin, Kathy Tynan, Mairead O’hEocha, Alison Pilkington, Brian Maguire, Colin Martin, Gabhann Dunne, Gemma Browne, Gillian Lawler, John Lalor, Natasha Conway, Orla Whelan, Oscar Fouz Lopez, Stephen Loughman, Marcel Vidal, Harry Walsh Foreman, Mark O'Kelly, Patrick Graham, Salvatore of Lucan, Sonia Shiel, Sven Sandberg, Liliane Puthod, Forerunner, Sean Molloy, Sean Molloy
About the Exhibition
Pallas Projects present ‘Dubliners’ – the international section of the 6th Biennial of Painting, Zagreb, curated by Mark Cullen & Gavin Murphy. The exhibition affords a unique opportunity to present together for the first time, an intergenerational grouping of painters who were born, bred, studied (and taught), or live and work in Dublin. The invitation to curate such a survey of contemporary painting presents a huge opportunity, and invites its own questions. It allows us to consider: what does it mean to present a national (or municipal) exhibition today? What does (or can) such an exhibition say about a city, its people? What does it mean within the expanded topography of contemporary art with its multiple and unlimited forms? What does such an exhibition say about artists (or painters) working together in a city. Can we trace traits of influence, exchange and conversation, of a ‘community of painting’, or is painting the ‘purest form of individualism’?
Saturday 23rd October, 5pm CET
Panel discussion: What is it to paint (in) a city?
Artist talk moderated by critic, curator and educator James Merrigan, with panellists Stephen Loughman, Colin Martin, Mark O’Kelly, Sonia Shiel, Orla Whelan.
Wednesday 27th October, 6pm CET
Dubliners Reel, curated by Eve Woods
A screening of film works by Irish artists, featuring: Anne Maree Barry, John Byrne, Michelle Doyle, Kevin Gaffney, Léann Herlihy, and Gavin Murphy.
Pallas Projects/Studios (founded 1996) is a not-for-profit artist-run organisation dedicated to the facilitation of artistic production and discourse, via the provision of affordable artists studios in Dublin’s city centre, and curated projects, exhibitions, exchanges, off-site projects, talks, resource programmes, and publications. PP/S are at the forefront of research, advocacy and support of artist-run practice in Ireland and across Europe. They are authors of the research project and publication ‘Artist-Run Europe’ (Onomatopee, Eindhoven, 2016), which included contributions from AA Bronson, Transmission Gallery, Triangle France, and Eastside Projects and featured essays, case studies, and an index of 600 European artist-run spaces – a second updated edition of which is due in 2022.
Pallas Projects/Studios is funded by The Arts Council
‘Dubliners’ is funded by Culture Ireland
About the Biennial of Painting
The Croatian Association of Artists (HDLU) established the Biennial of Painting in 2011. The Biennial’s aim is to survey and evaluate the local painting scene in the context of new European movements and explore, through comparison, the global position of the medium of painting. In this way, HDLU promotes the development of the visual arts by supporting and encouraging artistic creativity and excellence, and by conceiving and promoting international cultural exchange. Conferences, lectures and presentations are organised as part of a Biennial on the initiative of the organisers, to both educate and inspire. Traditionally two awards (Grand Prix and Young Artist Award) – extremely valuable from an expert artistic and financial point of view – are awarded to the most prominent artists and their work.
As well as presenting what is new in Croatian painting today, each edition of the Biennial engages with new and emerging tendencies in the medium of painting across various cities, regions and countries of Europe. In 2011, the guest city was Berlin (“I am a Berliner”, curated by Mark Gisbourne), in 2013 Vienna (“Vienna Calling”, curated by Theresia Hauenfels), in 2015 it was Gdańsk (“Exporting Gdańsk”, curated by Katarzyna Kosmala), in 2017 Prague (“Extended Painting Prag”, curated by Marek Schovanek), and in 2019 Leipzig (“Leipzig Connection”, curated by Mark Gisbourne).
HDLU is located in the famous Meštrović Pavilion in central Zagreb. It consists of three exhibition spaces: Prsten Gallery, Bačva Gallery, and PM Gallery. Its mission and openness aims to foster all expressions of creativity, from prestigious world premieres and biennials to grassroots movements, with the desire to inspire and motivate the public through art.