The Mary Swanzy (1882-1978) exhibition runs at IMMA until the 17th February is the first retrospective of her work in 50 years. Her level of achievement, world travel and original thinking is unmatched in Irish art. Born in the late Victorian era, by her early twenties Swanzy had mastered the academic style of painting. She witnessed the birth of Modern art in Paris before the First World War and her work rapidly evolved through the different styles of the day, each of them interpreted and transformed by her in a highly personal way. A forthright and well travel artist outspoken on gender issues and remarked ” if I had been born Henry instead of Mary my life would have been very different”.
Best known for her Cubist and Futurist paintings, after 1914 she exhibited regularly at the Paris Salon des Indépendants and the Beaux Arts, alongside artists who are now household names. By 1946 she was included in exhibitions with Chagall, William Scott and Henry Moore but after this time her work fell into obscurity.
Take time out to enjoy a wonderful array of works and a recorded interview with Mary Swanzy which will make you smile at some of her remarks!