Baccanale Series 1979-1984

Alleluias of Love 1984
gold leaf, charcoal, conté, and pastel on D’Arches paper
collection Peter Dicks, London

In 1979, I moved to Loughview House, Co. Clare, Ireland. After a long period of post-art-student frustration, and while working as a sign writer and gilder, I had a sudden, and very welcomed breakthrough with the Baccanale series. Each work is nearly a square meter in size, and is comprised of qouache, gold leaf, charcoal, conté, and pastel on D’Arches paper. Birthing these images required working with my eyes closed at first, in order to make something that was both a complete departure from anything I had expected, or seen before; and yet closer to my own identity artistically and personally.

Baccanale Evening 1979
qouache, gold leaf, charcoal, conté, and pastel on D’Arches paper

Hilary Pyle surpised me with a great review in the Irish Times, in 1980, and in 1984, 9 works, including 3 of the Baccanale series were shown at Gimpel fils Gallery in London, with the Alleluias of Love, 1984, selling to a private collector in London.

Baccanale Morning 1980
gouache, gold leaf, charcoal, conté, and pastel on D’Arches paper
Homage and Memory, 1980
qouache, gold leaf, charcoal, conté, and pastel on D’Arches paper

Iconography from this series has continued to evolve through my work ever since these first Baccanales, as can be seen in the Reclining Women series.


Reclining Woman With Black Pearls I, 2004
Gold leaf, oil on Dura-Lar over BFK
102cm x 51cm
Reclining Woman With Black Pearls II, 2004
Oil on Dura-Lar over BFK
102cm x 24cm