Irish artist’s stunning new collection captures cityscapes in charcoal

Irish artist’s stunning new collection captures cityscapes in charcoal

STRIKING scenes of some of the world’s most beautiful cities have been captured in charcoal by one of Ireland’s leading landscape artists.

Dublin-based Gerard Byrne is currently exhibiting a collection of forty-five large scale charcoal drawings on canvas of urban scenes in Dublin, Paris, London, Brighton and Hove and Singapore.

Gerard Byrne pictured in action in Dublin (PIC: Richard Stokes)

The exhibition, titled Charcoalogy, opened on May 20, which is National Drawing Day, an initiative of the National Gallery of Ireland which aims to encourage creativity and celebrate the tradition of draughtsmanship.

Byrne’s latest collection features architectural scenes of cities where the artist himself has lived and worked in recent years.

Byrne's piece titled Parisian Life

“Believing that beauty is to be found in the everyday, Byrne looks to his surroundings for inspiration, being attracted by the complexity and form of architecture,” a spokesperson for the Gerard Byrne Studio explains of the collection.

“His drawings pay homage to the architectural heritage of the Georgian, Victorian, Edwardian, and Regency areas so emblematic of Dublin, London, and Brighton and Hove: ornate mouldings, bay windows, elaborate, arched doorways and gable-end chimneys.”

Byrne's drawing of the National Botanic Gardens in Dublin's Glasnevin

They added: “For centuries, drawing was fundamental to the production of art and design, a method of metamorphosis which brought artistic vision to life.

“Yet, in an era of increasingly digitised art, conceptual drawing and visualisation, draughtsmanship is in danger of becoming the skill of a bygone generation.

“Considered a Modern Impressionist, Gerard Byrne’s creative process embodies the expertise of his artistic forebears, beginning with a freehand charcoal sketch drawn directly onto the canvas.”

Byrne's 'Misty Morning' piece depicts the Albert Bridge in London

While known primarily for his finished oil paintings, Byrne sometimes chooses to leave a sketch as it is, “in its loose, expressive, monochromatic form”.

“Once playfully called ‘stop paintings’, in that they are halfway between creative conception and finished oil painting, these drawings offer not only a glimpse into Byrne’s artistic practice, but an insight into his artist’s eye,” his spokesperson explained.

Byrne's sketch of Palmeria Square in Brighton and Hove

Byrne’s Charcoalogy pieces were all sketched in person, on site and without the aid of prints or photos.

Charcoalogy is open for viewing at the Gerard Byrne Studio until June 17