Maurice Harron to launch north west’s largest art showcase

Artist Maurice Harron is responsible for some of Ireland's most striking public art works including the Tinnies in Strabane and Let Light Unite in Galliagh.
Artist Maurice Harron is responsible for some of Ireland's most striking public art works including the Tinnies in Strabane and Let Light Unite in Galliagh.

‘Hands Across the Divide’ sculptor and celebrated local artist, Maurice Harron, will officially open the largest showcase of works by local artists at the Alley Theatre Gallery in Strabane next week.

From Monday October 23 the Alley Theatre will for the first time host the annual ‘No Jury, No Prize’.

Liberty leading the People by Eugene Delacroix, 1830. 'No Jury, No Prize' is inspired by the artistic experimentation and egalitarian ethos that emerged out of the Salon des Refus�s and the Soci�t� des Artistes Ind�pendants in 19th century Paris.

Liberty leading the People by Eugene Delacroix, 1830. 'No Jury, No Prize' is inspired by the artistic experimentation and egalitarian ethos that emerged out of the Salon des Refus�s and the Soci�t� des Artistes Ind�pendants in 19th century Paris.

Maurice Harron will officially open the art exhibition on Wednesday October 25 from 7pm to 9pm, and it will run up until Friday November 17.

‘No Jury, No Prize’ was conceived as part of Derry’s City of Culture year, and since its successful launch at the London Street Gallery in 2013 the exhibition has gone on to become an annual fixture in the calendar of artists working in Derry and Donegal.

For the past few years ‘No Jury, No Prize’ has been shown at the Saldanha Gallery, Fort Dunree in Inishowen, but this year the exhibition organisers, Creative Village Arts (CVA) from Derry and Artlink from Donegal, have sought to encourage more artists from across the North West to join in.

CVA and Artlink have organised collections of artwork from artists based in and around Portrush and Strabane, as well as Derry and Buncrana, and have moved the exhibition to a larger gallery, The Alley Theatre in order to accommodate more work.

A spokesperson said: “For the gallery visitor, the appeal of ‘No Jury, No Prize’ lies in the unexpected charm of encountering artworks by some of the region’s most celebrated artists hung alongside work submitted by enthusiastic amateurs.

“The exhibition is always a vibrant and eclectic mix of subject matter, styles and mediums, with something to challenge and satisfy all tastes and opinions.

“All artwork submitted is shown, on condition that it does not breach copyright or cause offence, and it is displayed without any sense of hierarchy and judgement.

“The ‘No Jury, No Prize’ exhibition is both a celebration of art and creativity, and a conceptual experiment into what is art, who is an artist and how we can open these parameters up to everyone who wishes to actively create.

“It is inspired by the artistic experimentation and egalitarian ethos that emerged out of the Salon des Refusés and the Société des Artistes Indépendants in 19th century Paris.

“This democratic expression of art is related to a wish for people to realise the power of creativity in effecting positive changes in their lives.

“The entirely ‘un-juried’ exhibition is undoubtedly the largest showcase of local art in the North West.”

For further information contact the Alley Theatre Box Office on 028 71 384444 or visit www.alley-theatre.com