© Gwen O’Dowd
Gwen O'Dowd, Irish, b.1957
Title: Sky
Date: 2017
Medium: Carborundum
Sheet: 38.2 x 46.3 cm
Image: 25.5 x 33.5 cm
Signed: lower right, under plate, in graphite: Gwen O'Dowd
Credit Line: Purchased, 2018
Object Number: NGI.2018.121.3
DescriptionGraphic Studio Dublin, Fine Art Printmakers, was founded in 1960 to teach traditional printmaking skills then unavailable in Irish art colleges, and to provide studios and technical assistance to artists to make fine art prints. Its founders were Patrick Hickey, Leslie MacWeeney, Liam Miller, Elizabeth Rivers and Anne Yeats. A gallery, known as Graphic Studio Gallery was established in 1988, to promote fine-art printmaking in Ireland and abroad, to educate the public about printmaking, and to exhibit and sell prints on behalf of member artists. It is located off Cope Street in Temple Bar while the Studio is based in an old warehouse building on the North Circular Road.

Graphic Studio Dublin published sponsors’ portfolios from the 1960s to the 1980s. These portfolios consisted of six prints presented in a portfolio and in later publications a poem was also added. These works were produced to raise funds for the running of the studio and were a great success. In 2010 Graphic Studio relaunched the Sponsors' Portfolios as part of their 50th anniversary celebrations. Over ten years, they will publish 10 portfolios (one per year). Each year an edition of 75 bespoke folders is made, each of which contains four prints by Graphic Studio printmakers and invited artists and one piece of writing. Writers have included Jennifer Johnston, John Banville and Colm Toibín.

The commissioned artists and writer in 2017 are: Cliona Doyle, Gwen O'Dowd, Aoife Scott, Elke Thönnes, and the writer Colm Toibín.
This print is by Gwen O’Dowd. Born in Dublin, Gwen studied at the National College of Art & Design, and began exhibiting in the mid-1980s. She has exhibited regularly in Ireland and Britain, as well as continental Europe and North America. She participated in the L’Imaginaire Irlandais festival in Paris in 1996, and her work is in many public and private collections. Among other awards, she won the Oireachtas Exhibition prize in 1990 and the Íontas Exhibition prize in 1994.

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