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Clifden Arts Festival 2023 – Visual Arts Programme – Fergus Bourke – An Eye for Beauty

By August 10, 2023August 18th, 2023No Comments

An Eye for Beauty

Fergus Bourke

Fergus Bourke, born in Bray in 1934, discovered his passion for photography at a young age, capturing frozen moments in his mind’s eye, even before holding a camera. His early work in Dublin focused on documenting decisive moments amidst the city’s rapid modernization, blurring the lines between Sean O’Casey’s plays and the real tenements of the 1960s and 70s. During a visit to New York City, he caught the attention of André Kertész, leading to several of his photographs being acquired by the Museum of Modern Art.

Later in his career, Bourke shifted his focus to intimate portraits, taken in the natural light of his Sandymount studio. Through this approach, he unknowingly revealed the deeper nature of his subjects’ relationships. In 1992, after being the first photographer inducted into Aosdána, he moved west to Connemara. There, he spent the last stage of his career exploring the interplay of light and shadow on the landscapes, capturing details often overlooked by others. Sadly, he died in 2004, leaving behind a powerful body of work that reflects the essence of the human condition and the beauty of Ireland itself.

Official Opening September 15th at 6 pm


2023 Festival Programme