Caroline Canning’s Poolbeg

Caroline Canning's Poolbeg Exhibition

Pic: Caroline Canning

Get a new perspective on Poolbeg as Ranelagh Arts Centre hosts Caroline Canning’s exhibition.

Caroline Canning is an intuitive, physical artist, who has been engaging with her art for the past 15 years.

“I decided to do a fine art degree at night in Dún Laoghaire IADT. I bailed out after 2 years, mainly because I didn’t get enough painting. There was a lot of very cerebral questioning going on, whereas what I love most is to wonder at the beauty of things and do my best to convey this with paint… Talking about it doesn’t work. You have to just do it. Even if you’re not in the mood – it kind of creates its own energy.”

She paints mainly from her home, which is itself bears the evidence of her hands-on approach! “I noticed a streak of alizarin crimson on the fridge handle this morning. This happens all the time. My family complain about the butter smelling of turps. This morning I had to pick dog hairs off a painting that was propped-up, drying against a wall. I like it like this. You can put on the spuds for dinner while waiting for something to dry, or hang out a wash while figuring out what to do next on a sky.”

Caroline decided to focus on the Poolbeg Chimneys when she noticed just how many places they are visible from. “You can see them from all over the city – these paintings try to show that. From Sandymount, where we walk the dog; from Three Rock Mountain; from Howth, looking down on them through pines; from the Shelley Banks… My latest discovery is the view of them from the dunes behind Dollymount.

“This exhibition has been planned for a long time, but it’s only in the last few months that I decided to make it all about Poolbeg. Poolbeg is a very special spot for many Dubliners. The two striped chimneys are iconic elements in the landscape.”

There will be around 30 paintings on display in the exhibition, which opens tomorrow at 7pm and runs until Saturday, May 23.

By Aimée Mac Leod