dublin

McDermott & McGough

Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA)

Using obsolete printing techniques and an 8 x 10" camera, David McDermott and Peter McGough in the 1980s and ’90s, made photographs that look like they were produced a century ago. This display of 120 small pictures in four rooms, newly decorated for the exhibition with faux-antique handpainted wallpaper and an eighteenth-century floor pattern copied from an old Dublin design, surveys nearly twenty years of the artists’ career. No cars, computers, or modern machinery appear in these photographs. The pair’s cyanotype An Assortment of Studio Props, 1913, 1997—fake composition dates are part of their titles—presents the odds and ends associated with a beaux-arts studio school. The palladium print Frightened of Machinery but Devoted to Machines, 1895, 1989, depicts hands joined in prayer before an old-fashioned typewriter. McDermott & McGough do ironical religious scenes: In Shocked to Read

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