Home from Home
Irish artists respond to COVID 19 restrictions

James L. Hayes

Artist Response

At outset of the Covid 19 closures my immediate focus was given over to my role at Crawford College of Art in Cork. In between online video conferencing meetings and tutorials,  I spent some of my down time running routes around my locality of rural north Cork. This was a measure to allay and restrict my own intake of the 24 hr news cycle, that was centred on the global pandemic that is Covid 19 and the subsequent anxiety it presents.

During my running time, midway through our spring, I considered my immediate environment, the nature of our seasonality, my regions agricultural life and its attractive scenery. I also used this time to consider my own practice and the work I had submitted for the HOME Exhibition. The sculptures and installations I make always place a heavy emphasis on materiality, process, repetition and the multiple. I am also always interested in science and the evolutions and collaborations between science, art and nature.   

I thought about the repetition of laps and routes of my running, the stop and start of daily routines,  working from home, and the emphasis we all now seem to have placed on adventurous cooking and baking while under Covid 19 restrictions (& the popularity of these endeavours, highlighted so prevalently through our social media channels) . I thought about how I often I extended or intersected my culinary interests with my sculptural practice and vice versa.  I enjoy how many methods and ideas and processes can cross pollinate and exist within new medias and new contexts and how objects can change materially from one to another. My response for HOME From HOME is an expression of some this and how we activate our daily routines, the repetitive crossovers and interactions. 

About the Artist

James L Hayes is contemporary artist based at The National Sculpture Factory in Cork.  He has multi-disciplinary art practice, making sculptures, installations and films as well as developing large scale commissions and public art projects.  He exhibits his works nationally and internationally, recent projects were held at The Regis Center for Arts at the University of Minnesota & The Franconia Sculpture Park, Minnesota, and La Salle College of Arts in Singapore. 

Recent commissions have been created for The Office of Public Works(OPW), The Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Other recent works and installations were exhibited at the MART Gallery, in Dublin, The UNO Gallery in New Orleans, Art Market Budapest and The SUPERMARKET Art Fair Stockholm. He has received numerous awards from the Arts Council of Ireland, Culture Ireland, Cork City Council and Cork County Council to support his practice and he is the principal Lecturer in Sculpture at Crawford College of Art in Cork.