Margaret Cahill has exhibited in London, New York, Sweden and Eastern Europe as well as widely in the UK. Her work is represented in public, corporate and private collections in Britain and abroad.
Cahill makes atmospheric expansive paintings that deal with memory and place. She is interested in recording and responding to places that are in a state of transition - spaces in between – places that evidence traces of powerful experiences. The images from such places become the starting point for paintings of spaces balanced between the real and imaginary that look beyond the landscape to distil the essence of a place capturing the sensations it evokes.
The paintings on canvas are built up slowly using thin layers of oils and varnishes. Photographic images are trapped beneath as if rising to the surface like memories, like photographs finding form in developing solution.
The image with its metaphorical resonance is central to the work encapsulating concerns about the past and present, home and displacement, uncertainty, transience and mortality.
The artist’s ongoing preoccupation with sites of conflict and abandoned places has resulted in a photographic archive compiled over a number of years in travels to Eastern Europe.
These images are the principal sources for series of paintings that are informed by a particular place yet allow for a universal resonance. The sense of places known and unknown…incidents remembered and imagined. The elusive nature of memory - both collective and personal.
Events and ideas are implied through disconnected fragments - the unremarkable, the incidental – abandoned homes, apartment blocks - faces passed in the street, lost in the crowd – lives cast adrift from history and memory.
Meaning must be pieced together like memories
The work invokes notions around absence and the nature of memory and raises questions about our relationship with the landscape in an increasingly violent and constantly shifting world.
Margaret Cahill is represented by 'Four Square Fine Art', London.