Bairre Mac Ráighne
Purgadóir (Níl Gaeilge Agam)
Hare-brained chronicles; jerry-built and gimcrack sequences; ethnic squabbles, and changing tides - these are the basal components that extend a place for my experience of the Irish language as a non-native speaker, and its shrapnel that has punctured wider aspects of the Irish identity within a contemporary Ireland.
These stories of mine have become laden with themes of stagnation and punishment, and of estrangement and reconciliation – in which they sit in some feverish, blended realm of painting and ethnofiction. This purgatorial world - fixed between a dissonant East and impalpable West Ireland - is something of a lodgings for the contrasting gaudy and earthy colourations of acrylic paint; buttery swellings of wax residue; and leaden charcoal whiffs and trails, that atone for my own muddled identity as a scantily clad Irishman.
The passive wrangles and defiance of eventuality, of an island burdened with the painful failures of communication felt by many in English-speaking Ireland - that both languages spoken here are not really our own - have pressed me to render
what this all really means outside of some
scholastic, greasy lump of a tome;
what it meant to them, and
why we’ll never feel at home.