Adrian Mc Grath


Adrian Mc Grath is an artist from Carlow, Ireland, now based full time in Helsinki. Through most of his teens he trained to be a plasterer on Irish construction sites, but eventually he chose to study art, and graduated from Waterford Institute of Technology (Ireland) in 2012 with a Bachelor in Visual and Performing Arts. He went on to work professionally as an artist, and performance coach, working and exhibiting throughout Ireland and France. He moved to Finland in 2017 to study, and has subsequently received a Masters from Aalto University in Visual Art (ViCCCA M.A.). Through his art practice Mc Grath explores the potential for visual art to signal emotions of universal human experience. He has adopted a method of visual communication akin to that of everyday signage, in that his visual language is often concentrated, and very deliberate, reduced to its essential parts. His works often focus upon one particular emotional element of a certain state of being, most often concerning labour and redundancy. Through this work he addresses mostly emotional hazards, which he identifies through his own experience, hazards in our environment that are often unknown, but potentially more damaging to an individual than the many marked physical hazards we have sign-posted around us.

    In his exhibition SKY MELTS & ICE BREAKS, at Maa-Tila, Adrian Mc Grath presents new works which mark a notable transition in his practice away from merely identifying hazards, onto suggesting a possibility of healing from them. This healing could be seen as a personal resurrection, or renewal, but for this to occur some form of death must be experienced, and it is through these current works in SKY MELTS & ICE BREAKS, that Mc Grath signals an ultimate end, an end in which one sheds all parts of the present self, even hope, only to somehow rise and rebuild. A necessary end, but one within a process of going on, contradictory of course, but sincere belief in the descent is necessary for one to discard all of now. Mc Grath allows the drastic seasonal changes of the Finnish environment, to inform his approach to this exhibition, in order to strike a most common chord for all who have known it’s harsh winters, and the consequentially more delightful springs.