Sean Scully & Alberto Giacometti: Walls of Aran, Head of Diego

July 14 - 21, 2007

"On the left is Giacometti, if not the greatest sculptor of the 20th century, in the top five of greatest sculptors of the 20th century, obviously Italian. He made figures out of bronze and plaster, a very obsessive artist like myself, not a particularly experimental artist; he ended up making obsessive figures that stand like ragged sentinels facing time and all the elements of nature and human history that are thrown at them. So they represent in a sense, what remains. On the right is a hut from the Aran Islands, Inis Meain, a photograph taken by myself. I have been encouraged lately to assume the vanity of a photographer and this photograph is in a book that was published very recently of my photographs. Again it also represents in a sense what remains. It's a hostile environment. It has a similar stoic personality to the sculpture on the left, which of course is an artwork and therefore much more strangely expressive... in the walls of Aran you will notice each wall has its own personality and was made, in a sense, like a mountain, more vertical, more geometric, rounder, smaller and so on. The wall itself is a question of placing stones so they don't come apart, using gravity to withstand the wind. Both of them in a way express a kind of loneliness. So both of them are in a sense a testament to what remains, even though one is art and the other is not particularly art" [Sean Scully, extracted from a lecture given at Limerick University, 14 October 2003]

 

The second of our series of 26 exhibitions presented a new series of Sean Scully's photographs from the Walls of Aran series (2005) alongside a single work by Alberto Giacometti, Tete de Diego au col roule, a stunning portrait head of his brother Diego from 1954.