The secret gallery’s blog

Maybe the first secret gallery in Doolin, Co. Clare, Ireland

Posts Tagged ‘paintings

recent paintings

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I have spent the last six months painting obsessively and I have come to the end of my 72 canvas stash! Feeling both excited and sad that this part of the journey is over. I had no idea how these paintings would develop when I started them. Here are some of the ones I finished recently. They are oil on canvas and range in size from 20 x 20cms, 25 x 25cms and 30 x 30cms.

This is the most continuous and uninterrupted period time I have spent developing paintings, working nearly everyday in my studio for 6 months on them. For financial reasons, usually when I make such a large body of work I use recycled and found materials, such as my rubble installation, the bank statement boat installation or the floating ink works made with buoys. It has been really great to focus this much on painting on canvas. I even started making my own paint.

I draw all the time but I never do studies for the paintings beforehand, I prefer to work things out directly on the canvas, enjoying the element of chance and surprise. I improvise, working spontaneously hoping to make constant discoveries, no matter how small. One or two of them I might go back to and work on, but time will tell how they feel after a little bit of distance. I am working on 10 Chinese paper scrolls at the moment, its nice to stretch out a bit, they are 8 foot long but working with ink is a lot less forgiving and every mark I make stays visible forever.

After a few weeks of painting, some of the paintings started to gain a feel of moment so I continued along this journey. Thinking about Taoism and Eastern philosophy. I decided to call them after different types of bamboo, bamboo being highly regarded for its many virtues, and a symbol for harmony between nature and human beings.


Holttumochloa magica

Ochlandra travancorica

Phyllostachys arcana

Himalayacalamus hookerianus

Images above 1,2,3,4 oil on canvas 25 x 25cms (top 3 images ) & 30 x 30 cms (bottom image) Marianne Slevin 2019

Currently these are all available for private viewing at the Funny Little Gallery, Doolin



Written by Marianne Slevin

11 March, 2019 at 4:44 pm

The Secret Gallery is Opening!

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My Dad’s woodwork on the left and my dry point prints at the bottom and oil on canvas above.





We were going for the sparse look with just a few paintings hanging in  each room but then decided to show more of the work. James has made a beautiful sign for the gallery which is going up this afternoon!

Written by Marianne Slevin

13 April, 2009 at 2:53 pm

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One Yes one No and a Hundred more Applications more to go!

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Oil on canvas      “7 moons”             Marianne Potterton  2008


At last the letter arrived, I opened it and was rather disheartened to see that I had not been chosen to be in an open submission group show that I had applied for in November. I suppose it just depends on the curators, some will like your work and others wont. It just means that as an artist you have to send a lot of different applications out into the universe. Thankfully I had sent out another one and was accepted! Yes I am going to be in a three person show in August in the Courthouse Gallery in Ennistymon, I hope as many people as possible can make it there. I have not seen the other artist’s work yet, but I am looking forward to.

I have been doing barter, sold and given away quite a few of my paintings including the one above, so I am going to have to paint some more which I can sell! Barter is a wonderful thing! I own quite a few pieces of art that I acquired through work swaps with other artists, I only wish I had done more work swaps! I would also be happy to trade art for other trades and things that people have to offer. So if you would like to do some barter please let me know.

Written by Marianne Slevin

13 January, 2009 at 12:12 pm

The times they are a changing!

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Propelled into motion by James my partner, we are juxtaposing drinking at home, budgeting and reducing our carbon footprint! (when I say drinking at home I mean once, but it was fun!) I have not been taking my usual unnecessary ticky-tours around in the car and constant trips to the not-so-near supermarket! The Secret Gallery has been a secret bakery today! I was hoping that just at its messiest moments that nobody would walk in! The smell of freshly baked bread can help sell a house but I am not sure about paintings! Or more lightly recently, burnt offerings and flour everywhere! This morning’s baking was brown bread, then sticky flap jacks, apple and pear crumble with organic fruit from Mum and Dad’s garden. I am trying to resist the temptation to do a 20 something kilometer round trip just to buy a bulb of garlic, I know it would make the lentil and squash Indian dish I am making, taste allot better! Though I made it so spicy we probably wont be able to taste a thing!

The other day I picked up the book, Scott’s Last Expedition. Reading the glossary I was woken up slightly when I read the endangered words such as:

Barrier, the immense sheet of ice, over 400 miles wide and still greater length, which lies south of Ross Island to the west of Victoria Land.

Frost smoke, a mist of water vapour above the open leads, condensed by severe cold.

Piedmont, coastwise stretches of the ancient ice-sheet which once covered the Antarctic continent, remaining either on the land or  wholly or partially afloat.

Nunatak, a ‘lonely peak’ of rock in the mist of ice; when rounded by glacial action, a Nunakol.

Written by Marianne Slevin

5 October, 2008 at 5:55 pm

Secret art in surprising places

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I love the idea of things being a little bit surprising, even odd! I would like to think of the art that I make extending out beyond the parameters of the frame or actual piece that I make. I was thinking why did we call the gallery The Secret Gallery, well one of the answers is that the word secret hints at something that is unknown possibly magical or mysterious, coming across something that is personal or intimate as opposed to solely commercial. I like the idea of having a gallery in a cottage that is also a home. To me art and life are inseparable. I do also enjoy the less homely type of gallery! However, they say we try to create what we think missing in the world, and I wish there were lots of secret galleries, and if I was going to buy some art I would love to talk to the artist over a good cup of coffee or a glass of wine! I wish there was more art that was taken out of its studio storage hiding places! For me it has been a very positive experience to air my paintings and other art work to the public.

Written by Marianne Slevin

13 September, 2008 at 1:42 pm