Father and Son, is an exciting and unique exhibition, that provides art lovers and enthusiasts alike, an opportunity to join Val and Roland, in reflecting over the many different styles of imagery, that have been a continuous part of their combined artistic life. The show will give a retrospective view of the different periods throughout Val’s career in painting.
Val Byrne, B. Arch., FRIAI. was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1936. Following his secondary education he went on to study Art and Architecture at University College Dublin, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture degree. After a short spell working in London he returned to Dublin and set up a practice in partnership with another architect.
Val has painted throughout his life, collecting a major win at a national arts competition. However, with his architectural practice growing apace, his painting had fallen behind. By the early 70's, the business had developed into one of the largest architectural firms in Dublin, and had undertaken a number of major projects throughout Ireland. This led to an expansion of the business, with the opening of an office in Nigeria, followed by offices in Sudan and Libya.
In 1985 he was awarded a Fellowship of the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland. In the late 1980's he retired from his profession, and set up an Art Gallery in Bray, Co. Wicklow. He then revisited painting in a full time capacity. Due to Val’s architectural background, he has a particular interest in the urban landscapes of Ireland, the majority of his work is concentrated on 20th/21st Century Ireland. In his paintings, Val places a strong emphasis on harbours, boats, and of the surrounding buildings. His paintings display the bright colours of the buildings, that have always been a characteristic feature of the towns, villages and harbours around Ireland.
His work is held in private and corporate collections worldwide, including Mary McAleese, President of Ireland, Mary Robinson, Former President of Ireland and U.N. Commissioner for Human Rights, Jean Kennedy Smith, formerly U.S. Ambassador to Ireland. Dept of Foreign Affairs for the Irish Embassiesin Europe, USA, Africa, Asia. In 2004 he completed six large canvases for the Irish Ambassador's new residence in Canberra, and a further eight in 2009 for the residence in Ottawa, Canada, the Irish Air Corps Baldonell, the Irish Naval Service, The Department of Defence, the Crown Prince of Oman General John de Chastelain, Brian Keenan, Seamus Heaney, and Eamon de Buitlear, amongst many others.
Forty paintings were commissioned for the book " Bray and North Wicklow" published in 2004.
His paintings of the 75th Anniversary of the Irish Navy are included in, "A Maritime history of Cork", and " Smithies of Ireland in the 19th Century". Many hotel groups have acquired his work for their reception areas and boardrooms. He has exhibited in the Royal Hibernian Academy, Eigse Art Festival, Art Ireland, and has participated by invitation in Art In Action Ireland for ten consecutive years. He has exhibited in many solo and group shows. Val’s work can be seen in galleries throughout Ireland.
Val has always sought to include an element of quirkiness and the absurd in his work.
"If there is a wobbly leaning lamppost with straggling wires in the scene, I leave it in."
This is clearly expressed in his work along with a developing interest in his first love, Cubism. Today he is the only Irish artist working with a Cubist approach to Irish images, as he sees them.
Roland's landscapes combine traditional watercolour techniques with his own innovative creative methods. This bold use of watercolour allows for dynamic composition with a hint of abstraction drawing the viewer into a rustic yet detailed world, laden with atmosphere and colour. The effects are both subtle, yet dramatic, resulting in unique contemporary watercolour paintings. A must see collection of work.
Excitedly, this is the very first Father and son exhibition that Val & Roland have done , and it is an honour to be able to bring this show to you exclusively at The Doorway Gallery.