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Book Tickets
For Adults

Meet the Artist: Megan Rooney

26 September, 6.30–8.30pm

Join us for an in-conversation with Megan Rooney to celebrate the launch of the Megan Rooney: Echoes & Hours exhibition publication.

Book Now £10 (£8 Friends, £5 students), booking required

Artist Megan Rooney will be in-conversation with three of the book’s contributors, writer Rebecca Birrell, writer Emily LaBarge and curator Amy Tobin. The event will be followed by a drinks reception and the opportunity to visit the exhibition.

About the Book

Megan Rooney: Echoes and Hours is the first monograph to explore the work of one of the most exciting emerging painters of her generation.

Rooney’s sensuous and compelling paintings reinvigorate the power of abstraction. They embody a sense of boundless energy and life, whilst reflecting the artist’s deep knowledge of painting and the potential of each viewer’s encounter. Vibrant colour and gesture combine in dense, apparently infinite layers. Each canvas captures the ebb and flow of Rooney’s process, from repetitive overpainting to the use of abrasives to remove pigment.

This major new book accompanies Rooney’s first solo exhibition in the UK. It explores the variations in her painting practice across a series of new works made for the exhibition. The book illustrates these works including a temporary mural at Kettle’s Yard painted directly on the gallery walls, as well as documenting earlier, formative paintings. Three newly commissioned essays and an interview with the artist in her studio explore Rooney’s practice and the resonances of her hugely captivating work.

Pre-order the book

About the Speakers

Rebecca Birrell

Rebecca Birrell is a Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellow at the University of St Andrews. She was formerly Curator of 19th and 20th Century Paintings and Drawings at The Fitzwilliam Museum.Her first book, This Dark Country: Women Artists, Still Life and Intimacy in the Early Twentieth Century, a blend of collective biography and art criticism, was published by Bloomsbury in August 2021..

Emily LaBarge

Emily LaBarge is a Canadian writer based in London. Her work has appeared in Artforum, Bookforum, the London Review of Books, the New York Times, and the Paris Review, among other publications. Dog Days is forthcoming in the UK with Peninsula Press. Excerpts appeared in the winter 2023 issue of Granta and the autumn 2023 issue of Mousse.

Megan Rooney: Echoes & Hours

This is the first major solo exhibition in the UK of work by Megan Rooney (b. 1985, South Africa). Her paintings have an irresistible life and energy, renewing the potential of abstraction to embody the richness of the visual world.

In June 2024, Rooney will spend three weeks making a new ‘mural’, painting directly on the walls of one of Kettle’s Yard’s two galleries. In the other gallery a group of new paintings will be exhibited for the first time.

Created in ‘family groups’, the size of the canvases she uses are determined by the reach of her outstretched arms. Vibrant colour and line appear boundless, capturing the ebb and flow of their making, from the use of abrasives to remove pigment to repeated overpainting. Each work tells a compelling story, poetically recalling the real, the remembered and the imagined – inviting visitors into their restless and pleasurable worlds.

Find out more about Megan Rooney: Echoes & Hours

Megan Rooney, Flashed On (Hours), 2024, acrylic, oil, pastel and oil stick on canvas 199.6×152.3cm. Photo: Eva Herzog

Access

Please note, for conservation and security reasons, no bags or large coats are allowed in the house. Limited bag storage is available at reception.

This event will take place in the extension of the house which is accessible, with some limitations. The upper part of the ground floor extension area is accessible for wheelchair users and the ground floor extension area of the house is newly accessible for wheelchair users with a ramp. There is no lift to the upper floors of the house. If you call in advance or ask at the information desk we can reserve an accessible seat for you. Please get in touch on 01223 748100 or email mail@kettlesyard.cam.ac.uk.

Visit our Access page