WHAT'S ON  -> IAF -> "I"

Curated by: Sandra Kelly

Artists: Kitsch Doom, Ciara O’ Neill, Matt Higgs, William Murray

Kitsch Doom .png


Garter Lane Gallery [Online Exhibition]

Exhibition dates:

Sunday, 18th October Online @ 3:45pm

to Monday, 26th October

PLEASE NOTE: There may be works of art on display in this exhibition "I" which some people may find distasteful. Parents should exercise their judgement before bringing their children into this exhibition.

“Creativity takes courage” Henri Matisse:

“I” is a curated selection of works by emerging artists; Kitsch Doom, Ciara O’ Neill, Matt Higgs, William Murray. Each artist is exploring themes of gender, sexuality, and identity within Irish culture.

The artist works in a range of diverse mediums such as photography, print, drawing, sculpture, and
performance, and this collective exhibition aims to reflect samples of their work as individuals, who’s grouping together is providing a collective space for reflection, inquiry and immersion. Using
architectural interventions, the intent is that of creating a space that is soft, accessible, and intimate.

Keen to examine the reach of the gallery output into societal discourse, Sandra Kelly has curated an exhibition that will create conversation and stimulate debate. The works presented are accompanied by a programme of discussion, screening and workshop style events as a means of carrying the themes of the exhibition into a well structured and safe forum.

Some visitors to “I” may want to exercise parental discretion, and some may view the work as
“sensitive in nature”.

Garter Lane Arts Centre is based in the South East of Ireland providing a yearlong programme of

For further information please do not hesitate to contact Visual Arts and Education Manager, Sandra Kelly at gallery@garterlane.ie or on 051 877153.

This exhibition is supported by Waterford City Council.

Matt Higgs - Drag.PNG


Kitsch Doom is a printmaker, filmmaker, and performance artist based in Dublin, Ireland. Kitsch has a BA in Fine Art and Visual Culture and is pursuing a MFA in Fine Art Media at the National College of Art and Design in Dublin. Couched within theories on gender, identity, the body, and sociology, Kitsch transforms into different fictional characters. Narratives are created for these characters through the mediums of photography, video and printmaking. While these characters are ï¬ctional, they are derived from a position deeply personal to the artist and represent their own social and individual identities. The characters occupy a world where traditional roles and ideas still linger but they are rapidly trying to move on from them. The work occupies a space that lies inbetween reality and fiction, performance art and theatre, sexuality and gender and the social body and individual freedom.


William Murray produces installations, sculptures, video, drawings and photographs. The work deals with the youth obsessed, homoerotic and perfectible male bodies, which are given away in the digital realm. By taking these images out of their original context and dealing with them as sculptural objects, this engagement with materials slows down the eye whereby the physical and material nature of the sculptures shows a conflict between the throwaway and the ideal form.

The drawings and Photographs deal more explicitly with the notion of the queer male body as a subverted, damaged, and compromised version of the ideal male. The body is often shown as aspiring to the ideal male form while being compromised by outside materials such as duct tape.

William was born in Cork, Ireland in 1991. He has studied in Limerick School of Art & Design (ba) 2009-2013 and at National College of Art & Design (ma) 2014-2016. He currently lives and works in Dublin Ireland.


Matt Higgs is a recent fine art graduate from Crawford College of Art and Design in Cork City. Whose work primarily focuses on digital photography with elements of sculptural installation. Using first- hand experience performing as a drag queen, Matt allows the viewer in to see the experiences of what goes on behind the curtain – both a physical and psychological transformation.

Currently exploring the stigmas that surround male victims of domestic abuse – toxic masculinity and gas lighting are prominent themes within Matts work.

Matt’s current series of work was influenced by his own personal experiences of sexuality and how he navigated this phase of my life while shifting from a rural to urban setting.

Exploring themes of; duality, time and the queer experience, Matt looks at the correlation between the split or divide that a drag artist feels when creating a character - how that echoes back to the very same emotional and physical appearance split or divide closeted LGBTQ+ youth face, growing up in conservative rural Ireland. The idea of a passport photograph being a form of identification, a timestamp of a certain period in time, allowed Matt to dissect the emotions of my ‘first times’, pertaining to the LGBTQ+ experience. By playing with fragmentation and the layering of duotone and anaglyph images, it introduced a narrative of a split/divide. A fragmentation. A tension.


Ciara O' Neill is Dublin based artist. In 2016 as part of her graduate exhibition, Ciara created the body of work known as Imperfect Bodies. The works are formed from thick layers of household paint, which are moulded, stitched, and glued into a desired shape, resulting in an artwork that is not quite a painting but not quite a sculpture.

Through her final year research, the artist found that women are often pressured to look a certain way, partially due to how the female body has been treated throughout art history: nude women are more commonly depicted by men and presented in an unrealistic manner, where body parts and genitals that are considered too graphic are not visible. What has been deemed “appropriate” in relation to depictions of the female nude has almost entirely been decided by male artists, denying women the ability to control how they’re represented within the fine art world. Through her work, the artist combines these anxieties to themes of reproductive rights and body politics, documenting concerns around the repealing of the eighth amendment. The marrying of these themes concludes that women have limited control of their body, both in terms of bodily representation and bodily autonomy.