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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.

This exhibition of work by the British artist Richard Hamilton focuses on his preoccupation for over 50 years with James Joyce’s novel ‘Ulysses’. Hamilton has explored through a series of drawings, etchings and digital prints ways of imaging, or imagining, the pictorial equivalents of the wanderings of Leopold Bloom. Each of the 18 chapters of the novel is treated in a different visual manner, reflecting the highly experimental nature of the book. Seven of the 18 episodes in Ulysses have so far been completed as full-scale illustrations, including such key works as ‘The Heaventree of Stars’, 1998, from ‘Ithaca’, and ‘Finn MacCool’, 1983, from the ‘Cyclops’ episode.

This exhibition accompanies the artist on his visual and intellectual journey through ‘Ulysses’ and offers a fascinating insight into the development of one person’s relationship with a work of literature over a period of 50 years. The exhibition coincides with the celebration of Bloomsday and the Museum will host a number of talks and lectures to celebrate the occasion and explore further the connections between Joyce and Hamilton’s work.

The exhibition is organised by the British Council in association with the British Museum, London and is curated by Stephen Coppel, Curator of Prints and Drawings, The British Museum. The exhibition is presented in association with the Irish Times.

A fully illustrated catalogue, with essays by Richard Hamilton and Stephen Coppel, accompanies the exhibition (price €20.00).

About the Artist

Richard Hamilton 1922–2011

British painter and collage artist Richard Hamilton studied painting at the Royal Academy School and the Slade School of Art. In 1952 he founded the ‘Independent Group’ which was instrumental in the development of English Pop Art. A major retrospective of Hamilton’s work was held in the Tate Gallery, London in 1992. He represented Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1993. An exhibition of Hamilton’s illustrations of James Joyce’s 'Ulysses' took place at IMMA in 2002.

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Talks and Lectures

A number of talks have been arranged to coincide with the exhibition:

In Conversation. Richard Hamilton and Stephen Coppel
Thursday 13 June 11.30am, East Wing Galleries. Booking essential.

Hamilton’s Odyssey: Joyce’s Ulysses
A gallery talk presented by Gerry Dukes, author, critic and lecturer on Bloomsday
Sunday 16 June 3.00pm. Booking essential.

Introducing Art influenced by Joyce
Lecture presented by Dr Christa-Maria Lerm Hayes
Sunday 21 July 3.00pm, Johnston Suite. Booking essential.

Additional Resources 


Additional Resources


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