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Royal Hospital Kilmainham
Dublin 8, D08 FW31, Ireland
Phone +353 1 6129900

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About the Collection

The IMMA Collection is a unique resource which is made available to the public through a vibrant programme of temporary exhibitions and projects. Collection Exhibitions may explore the work of an individual artist, or address a theme or historic period.

  • Admission €8 Tooltip
  • Students Free
  • IMMA Member Free
  • Concession €5 Tooltip
  • Under 18 Free Tooltip

Paula Rego, Obedience and Defiance is a major retrospective by one of the most influential figurative artists of our time Paula Rego. Spanning Rego’s entire career from the 1960s, comprising more than 80 works, including paintings never seen before and works on paper from the artist’s family and close friends.

The selection of works focuses on the moral challenges to humanity, particularly in the face of violence, gender discrimination and political tyranny. There are paintings and etchings related to children sold into slavery in North Africa (1996-98), abortion (1998-2000) and female genital mutilation (from 2009). Many of the images begin with the artist’s Portuguese roots and childhood experiences or respond to current affairs.

Paula Rego, Obedience and Defiance is curated by the distinguished art historian and former director of Whitechapel Gallery, Catherine Lampert.

The exhibition premiered in the MK Gallery, Milton Keynes (15 June – 22 September 2019); was then shown at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh (23 November 2019 to 17 March 2020) before traveling to IMMA.

An exhibition organised by MK Gallery, Milton Keynes with the National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh and IMMA, Dublin.

Please note that this exhibition addresses challenging subjects and includes images of a suggestive and/or graphic nature. Parental and carer discretion may be required.

Paula Rego, Obedience and Defiance

Exhibition Guide 


Exhibition Guide

Additional Resources 


Additional Resources

From the Rego Studio - Nick Willing with Catherine Lampert and Christina Kennedy Soundcloud
A Paula Rego Reading List by Alice Strang Soundcloud
IMMA / UCC Seminar: Paula Rego, Creative Performativity and Irish Art, 2021 Soundcloud

Take IMMA home

Catalogue Paula Rego, Obedience and Defiance €25 This beautifully produced publication accompanies the major touring exhibition, Paula Rego, Obedience and Defiance. The selection of works brings together paintings, drawings, and prints spanning the artist’s career from the 1960s to the present. It focuses on works that addresses the moral challenges of humanity, particularly in the face of violence, gender discrimination and political tyranny. Add to Cart

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Important Notice


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.