Solitude at Dathúil

Solitude - Dathúil Gallery
Solitude – Dathúil Gallery

Opening on May 5th at Dathúil Gallery, is an exhibition of art by Cicada (aspencicada) entitled Solitude. It comprises 17 images, 16 split between to ground floor and mezzanine level of the gallery, with a large format piece suspended from the ceiling, facing the main entrance.

I confess to not having been previously familiar with Cicada’s work, and this exhibition presents an interesting contrast of subject and style focused on the central theme of solitude, with the majority of the pieces depicting either individual  flowers and plants, or groups of flowers seen from above, while five present avatar studies.

Solitude - Dathúil Gallery
Solitude – Dathúil Gallery

“Solitude,” the artists informs visitors, “is the remoteness from habitations. The sense of feeling to want to be away from everything. I’d like to be able to get away for a long time, just to think, to plan and to just be. A time to fix myself, fix all things broken, fix everything.”

This is certainly evident in the five avatar studies on display, all of which convey a certain pensiveness or pathos. Three in particular – two on the left of the entrance and one to the right – appear to be part of the same narrative,conveying that need to be alone coupled with a pensive response to being discovered and observed.

Solitude - Dathúil Gallery
Solitude – Dathúil Gallery

The remaining two, which comprise the large overhead image and a further picture to the right of the entrance, are more stand-alone. The latter suggests a time of solitary reflection, the overall lighting of the piece perhaps indicative that the reflections in question are centred on darker thoughts.

However, it is the overhead image which tends to dominate the space and hold the attention. This is in part thanks to the blanket of yellow flowers, matching those in the image, which carpet the floor of the gallery either side of a path of yellow tiles, all of which direct us to the image, which in turn seems to embody the idea of being alone in order to fix oneself.

Solitude - Dathúil Gallery
Solitude – Dathúil Gallery

The images of plants and flowers further convey the idea of solitude, albeit quite differently; so differently, in fact, that they may at first seem out-of-place compared to the theme of the exhibit and the avatar studies. But they stand as a reminder that there is beauty and peace in solitude – and also beauty in being among one’s friends and peers.

There is no formal opening planned for this exhibition, partially due to schedule conflicts and partly because Cicada prefers not to have a party. Instead, the exhibition will open in the morning of Thursday, May 5th (SLT) and will remain open through until May 30th.

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