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Anne Madden, b.1932

Night Paths1988

Madden’s work abstract at first glance, but generally with a figurative element, regularly carries references to her Irish background as well as to a personal history of family loss. The residues of the Celts in the Bronze Age and the nineteenth century Great Famine, have covertly informed her work and she also turned to Greek mythology as a vehicle to work her way through family tragedy. This can be inferred from her use of colour and composition in works such as ‘Night Paths’. The triptych format of this work, a common device for her, echoes its usage in Western religious painting, where it is often associated with the story of the Crucifixion. The paths referred to here, linking her house to her garden studio, are both inviting and intimidating by virtue of their association with cosmic forces.

MediumOil on canvas
Dimensions 195.7 x 292.1 cm
Credit LineIMMA Collection: Donation, Vincent & Noeleen Ferguson, 1996
Item NumberIMMA.770
Copyright For copyright information, please contact the IMMA Collections team: [email protected].
Image Caption
Anne Madden, Night Paths, 1988, Oil on canvas, 195.7 x 292.1 cm, Collection Irish Museum of Modern Art, Donation, Vincent & Noeleen Ferguson, 1996

For copyright information, please contact the IMMA Collections team: [email protected].

About the Artist

Anne Madden b.1932

Irish artist Anne Madden spent her first years in Chile. Her family moved to Europe when she was four and lived in Ireland and London. She attended the Chelsea School of Arts and Crafts. In 1958 she married the Irish painter Louis le Brocquy. Madden’s semi-abstract work carries references to her Irish background as well as reflecting on life and death. She has exhibited widely, including a significant retrospective at IMMA in 2007 and a solo exhibition in 2023. She is a member of Aosdána.

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We would like to advise our visitors that our Main Reception area is closed for renovation from 22 April until mid-June.  A temporary reception is open on the ground floor next to the original main entrance. While we prepare to open our next exhibition Hilary Heron: A Retrospective on 24 May, there are two exhibitions to see Derry Film & Video Workshop and Self: Determination: Artists Commissions. IMMA’s gardens and café are open to the public.