Dorothy Cross (b.1956) is one of Ireland's most distinguished artists, well-known for using a vast array of materials in her practice - and for producing work that spans the creative disciplines, from sculpture to video to opera. Indeed, she produces works that are simultaneously lyrical, delicate, humorous and arresting.
With a strong interest in the natural world and the human relationship to it, Cross' work is particularly fitting for the rural idyll of Roche Court, the home of the New Art Centre. The artist perceives the natural world as a threatened territory of beauty and a place of constant change. It is this fluidity that inspires the strange and unexpected encounters that the artist seeks to conjure in those who engage in her work.
Cross first exhibited at the New Art Centre in the winter of 2017, presenting artworks that included the ambitious outdoor sculpture, Bed (pictured opposite). The piece consisted of a vast mass of Carrera marble into which the artist carved her quotidian object. Reminiscent of the grandeur of classical sculpture but paired with the domesticity of household furniture, Cross excels at compelling the viewer to stop in their tracks and consider the ordinary in new ways.
Dorothy Cross has exhibited globally and recent shows include: A History of Desire: Art from the 20th Century to the Digital, IMMA, Dublin (2019); Shaping Ireland: Landscapes in Irish Art, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin (2019); Dorothy Cross: Stalactite, Libby Leshgold Gallery, Emily Carr University of Art and Design, Vancouver (2018); J.M. W. Turner and contemporary art practice, New Art Gallery, Walsall (2017); Mystics and Rationalists and It's Me to the World, both Modern Art Oxford (2016); and Connemara, a travelling exhibition presented at both Turner Contemporary (2013) and the Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin (2014).
Cross participated in the Venice Biennale in 1993, the Istanbul Biennial in 1997 and the Liverpool Biennial in 1998. The artist also took part in the ground-breaking exhibition Bad Girls at the ICA London and CCA, Glasgow in 1994. Her operas include Chiasm (1999); Pergolesi's Stabat Mater (2004); and Riders to the Sea (2008).
Institutional collections that house Cross' work include: the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin; Norton Collection, Santa Monica; Art Pace Foundation, Texas; Ulster Museum, Belfast; Goldman Sachs Collection, London; The Arnolfini Trust, Bristol; Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane, Dublin; and Tate Modern, London.