Flaming Fleeces environmental installation at White Rock, Millom, Cumbria
Irene Rogan’s work, in her exploration of materiality and the metaphysical world, grapples with contradiction. Process, physicality and location are the visible effects of her contending with notions of the human condition and more recently, place. The work often has a theatrical presence that acts to gain the attention of the audience to view not just the transforming power in progress but the transformation that has obviously taken place and is a metaphor for the ‘divided self’ in lived experience and spiritual immanence.
An increasingly multidisciplinary practice incorporates scientific knowledge; microscopy and ecology and more recently social activism in the production of environmental installation, sculpture, documentary photography, sound works, drawing, participatory events, and performance.
Through collaborations, further development is the dialogue within an emerging curatorial practice, encouraging conversations with people from a broad range of disciplines: river geomorphologists, salt marsh ecologists, sound recordists and videographers, musicians, agricultural communities, astronomers, theoretical biologists, natural historians, choirs, writers, composers, artists, poets and relevant organisations and partners.
In recent years, her practice has expanded both nationally and internationally through residencies, travel research and exhibitions. Her current focus is on rural coastal areas of South West Cumbria.
Born in Millom, Cumbria (returned during 2016) having completed BA Hons, Nottingham Trent University in 1991 I remained in the City in order to establish a studio practice at Can Studio, Oldknows Factory, receiving grant awards from Arts Council England, Pollack Krasner Foundation (New York) and The British Council. These were followed by exhibition commissions, residencies and research bursaries to visit Portugal (2004), Spain Germany (2007) China (2008), Finland (2015), Florida (2015-16), Cuba (2017).
Since 2001 I have also been working on large and small projects in the public realm both in the capacity of a commissioned artist and creative consultant for permanent and temporary schemes. These opportunities have enabled collaboration with architects and landscape designers to successfully introduce a creative dynamic within urban regeneration initiatives, often drawing on scientific expertise in the fields of space, microbiology, ecology and acoustics. Concern for the environment and sustainability has introduced new narratives in my work in which layers of meaning are now projected through material, form and location - and in relation to the surrounding built environment.
My practice as a public artist can be viewed: