The Centre Culturel Irlandais is delighted to present this exhibition of 400 original drawings by Franco-Irish artist David Ryan. Deeply affected by the Troubles in Northern Ireland and its political and financial context, Ryan took his Irish mother's surname in 1981, the year political prisoner Bobby Sands died on hunger strike. The Chasseur de trèfles (or shamrock hunter) was born the same year, a character personifed by the artist himself who navigates between fiction and reality, fantasy and autobiography. For the last 40 years, the Chasseur has continually interrogated forms of freedom and the quest for happiness through videos and works on paper.
Begun in June 2020, the four hundred drawings exhibited in CCI – complemented by Coline Le Moine Veillon’s sound installation - tell of the real adventures of the Chasseur and his acolyte the Bushboy, while recounting a personal history of Ireland. Drawings are displayed in blocks of twelve, one of which forms an « H », like the former Northern Irish prison known as « H-Blocks ». Here David Ryan transforms the letter into H for Hope.
Using the rational layout of a sheet of graph paper, borrowed from Minimal Art, the Chasseur remarks on the irony of being unable to render a linear and definitive shape. The story is a compilation of jerks and jolts, plot twists, demands and absurd appearances, of claims for compensation and tragedies where mythology and current affairs intertwine.
The story of the Chasseur de trèfles is forever recomposed and regenerated; tears of pain are followed by those of joy.