The flowers in Austin Hearne's photographs come from religious sites, photographed on his many research trips around Ireland. A mixture of fake and real, arranged in various vessels and placed in differing settings.
In contrast to these documentary photos, Hearne presents a suite of staged still life images, assembled from the rose gardens and land around the now defunct St Clare’s Convent in Dublin's Harold's Cross, where the artist has his studio. In these photographs he constructs every element within the photographic frame, from the painted vessels, collaged backgrounds and the arrangements of the flowers themselves.
Utilizing a range of photographic and print manipulation, Hearne presents these pictures as allegories or symbols posing questions on the Catholic Church's influence on the many aspects of our lives, loves and bodies.
Artist's Statement: Sexy, beautiful, ugly, dead, dying, everywhere. Flowers; symbols of life, love and death, memorials to those past and passing. We are all flowers, battling time, only we have infinitely more than our showy friends. They remind us of our vibrancy, our individuality, our autonomy and cruelly our end.
About The Artist: Austin Hearne is a Dublin born and based artist. Having just completed his MFA in NCAD in Summer 2016, Hearne’s practice is rooted in photography wherein he explores the performative, decorative and immersive opportunities the medium affords.