Maria Boyle



By mariaboyle, May 31 2018 07:01PM

My three pieces for Romeo and Juliet exhibition are completed and ready for hanging for the exxhibition opening on 8th June.

Collaborating with writer/artist Sheila Farrell in response to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet we were drawn to the Queen Mab speech made by Romeo’s friend Mercutio (Act 1, scene 4) that speaks of the mischievous fairy Queen Mab who meddles with our dreams.

Mab comes from Celtic folklore and for me the speech put in mind the images of the strange creatures in the corbels at Kilpeck Church in Herefordshire. Sheila grew up in Ireland and was surrounded by a culture of such mythical tales. So, we played with the notion of the uncanniness of dreams.

My 'Dream Collection', in the use of imagery, colour and materials aims to capture a sense of the hyper-reality of our dreams and nightmares and of the familiar and unfamiliar touched with faerie magic. I have incorporated Sheila’s words into the works.

I am pleased that with the different use of materials and techniques three different dream moods are evoked.

From Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

Act 1, scene 4

ROMEO: I dreamt a dream tonight.

MERCUTIO: And so did I.

ROMEO: Well, what was yours?

MERCUTIO:      That dreamers often lie.

ROMEO: In bed asleep while they do dream things true

MERCUTIO: Oh, then, I see Queen Mab hath been with you.

BENVOLIO: Queen Mab, what’s she?

MERCUTIO: She is the fairies' midwife, and she comes

In shape no bigger than an agate stone

On the forefinger of an alderman,

Drawn with a team of little atomies

Over men's noses as they lie asleep;

Her wagon spokes made of long spinners' legs,

The cover, of the wings of grasshoppers;

Her traces, of the smallest spider web;

Her collars, of the moonshine's wat'ry beams;

Her whip, of cricket's bone; the lash, of film;

Her wagoner, a small grey-coated gnat,

Not half so big as a round little worm

Pricked from the lazy finger of a maid;

Her chariot is an empty hazelnut,

Made by the joiner squirrel or old grub,

Time out o' mind the fairies' coachmakers.

And in this state she gallops night by night

Through lovers' brains, and then they dream of love;

O'er courtiers' knees, that dream on curtsies straight;

O'er lawyers' fingers, who straight dream on fees;

O'er ladies' lips, who straight on kisses dream,

Which oft the angry Mab with blisters plagues,

Because their breaths with sweetmeats tainted are.

Sometimes she gallops o'er a courtier's nose,

And then dreams he of smelling out a suit;

And sometimes comes she with a tithe-pig's tail

Tickling a parson's nose as 'a lies asleep,

Then dreams he of another benefice.

Sometimes she driveth o'er a soldier's neck,

And then dreams he of cutting foreign throats,

Of breaches, ambuscadoes, Spanish blades,

Of healths five fathom deep; and then anon

Drums in his ear, at which he starts and wakes,

And being thus frighted, swears a prayer or two

And sleeps again. This is that very Mab

That plats the manes of horses in the night

And bakes the elflocks in foul sluttish hairs,

Which once untangled much misfortune bodes.

This is the hag, when maids lie on their backs,

That presses them and learns them first to bear,

Making them women of good carriage.

By mariaboyle, Apr 25 2018 08:08PM

What a strange month of extreme weather, rain, heat, wind, hail stones etc. Winter, Spring and Summer in just a few weeks!

The longer days are fabulous though, lots of lovely light. Been working on finishing my Romeo and Juliet pieces at the studio, nervously adding more printing and painting being at that tricky almost finished stage, nervous not to ruin it or overdo it. Working towards three wall hanging pieces; one silk velvet, one linen, and one noil silk (see below).

There will be two performance evenings, 8th and 16th June, with the writers performing their original works, plus the artworks exhibition, 9th -17th June, all at the ArtistsWorkhouse, should be good!

By mariaboyle, Mar 26 2018 04:19PM

March has been a month of some extreme weather with associated challenges to get to exhibitions and workshops!

The ArtistsWorkhouse 'I think this World is Magical' exhibition opening was delayed to the Saturday afternoon as the roads were too tricky for people to travel. The exhibition went well and enjoyed by those who ventured out in the cold and ice. Extra bonus for me as one of my 'Through the Arched Window' Artist Proof prints sold!

The Romeo and Juliet collaboration with Art\Write continues a pace with enjoyable sharing of ideas and discussions. Its gonna be great! Really got into the theme that Shela Farrell, my paired writer, and I have decided on; Mercutio's monologue on Queen Mab and the nature of dreams. Been developing lots of drawings.

Last weekend snow came again together with a challenging drive up to Glasgow for a week with Joanna Taylor-Kinnersley dyeing and printing. So fabulous to work in such a well equiped studio and chat to such a knowledgable artist and meet other likeminded creatives Annabel and Christine. Drawings transferred to silk screens, cloth dyed and printed plus some technical effects with devoure, discharge and flock. A great week with great company! And a good start on some work for our next exhibition.

Hopefully Spring is on the way now after a few false starts, at least the days are getting longer!

By mariaboyle, Feb 12 2018 04:44PM

Working on new pieces for the next ArtistsWorkhouse exhibition "I think this world is Magical". Evolving some pieces in different media, some prints and textile pieces looking at the same view through a window.

Not quite sure on how to respresent the leaves...Think its interesing working the same image across various formats and colours.

Started some interesting converastions with my collaboration writing partner Sheila for our Romeo and

Juliet exhibition and performance event. Looking at Queen Mab and the nature of dreams and nightmares; faeries, creatures, miniatures, thoughts and fears. Must look again at Hieronymus Bosch and his heaven and hell.

By mariaboyle, Jan 19 2018 03:13PM

Happy 2018! I don't tend to make New Year resolutions, but thought this year I woud make some artist related ones. To blog more reguarlary is one of them. Funny, when I get going I quite enjoy it, but somehow writing for me is so often work reated so it can feel like a chore in my head. Self reflection is good for the artistic practice, so here I go.

End of 2017 was mad busy with a big work project combined with some creative deadines. I do seem to work better when the deadlines are looming. One piece was for Dionne Swift's 'Collective Stitches' 2018 roving exhibition where ex students have been invited to submit a free machine embroidery piece 30x30cm. The challenge for me was only using machine embroidery as I tend to like to mix up materials and techniques. In addition the size was tricky as no matter how careful I was, and despite extending its size a few sizes it still kept shrinking! Quite a challenge. My piece was inspired by Swedish folk art and will be shown at the Knitting and Stitching Shows around the UK and Ireland, as well as the Netherlands with about 40+ other pieces from other artists. More details in 'CV' under 2018 exhibitions once available. Bit obsessed with this bird shape, I'm sure there will be more folk birds in 2018...

I am currenty working on some new pieces for the next ArtistWorkhouse exhibition opening on 2nd March called 'I think the world is magical'. I'm hoping I've had a breakthrough with a pastel drawing I've done, inspired by the distinctive windows of the ArtistsWorkhouse building. I will share more work in progress as I go. Planning to work again with linen, which I love!