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Patricia Hurl

Study for The Kerry Babies Trial1984

Hurl’s work is of its nature political, drawing her influences from feminist artists and activists in the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s. This work was originally shown in 1989 as part of Hurl’s solo exhibition at the Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, Dublin, titled The Living Room Myths and Legends. The works shown there responded to the ongoing abuse of women within Irish society, in particular referring to the Kerry Babies Trial and the 8th amendment of the constitution in 1983. The exhibition highlighted the ongoing involvement of the Church in determining the lives of women in Irish society.

Study for The Kerry Babies Trial, 1984, shows a row of clerical figures, their faces swathes of paint. They brood in an anonymous lurk of powerful menace. The obscuring of male faces is a technique which is apparent in other works by Hurl, depicting the anonymity and power displayed by Church and Man in deciding their fate.

Hurl’s recent practice has developed into performance and film in collaboration with Thierry Rudin producing an on-going body of work on the subject of folk narrative. Her practice is also currently exploring issues of isolation and loneliness, often associated with ageing.

MediumMixed Media on paper
Dimensions120 x 90 cm
Credit LineIMMA Collection: Purchase, 2021, 2021
Item NumberIMMA.4333
Out on loan Who will Write the History of Tears. Forms of Global Feminist Resistance and Solidarity, Muzeum Sztuki Nowoczesnej w Warszawie (Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw), 17/11/2021 - 13/02/2022
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Image Caption
Patricia Hurl, Study for The Kerry Babies Trial, 1984, Mixed Media on paper, 120 x 90 cm, Collection Irish Museum of Modern Art, Purchase, 2021, 2021

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

About the Artist

Patricia Hurl

Patricia Hurl creates expressionist works that deal with loss, pain, frustration and loneliness. Originally from Dublin and a former member of Temple Bar Galleries and Studios, she often works in collaboration with artist Therry Rudin.
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