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1
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Tim Mara, Girl on Picnic. 1971-72
Tim Mara Artist's Alphabet

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Tim was born in Dublin in 1948. His family left Ireland to live in London when he was five years old and he spent the majority of his lifetime in the UK. (For personal history and background on him see 'H' in the Artists Alphabet). It was always a special place for him as was Ireland as a whole.

Tim was extremely proud of his Irish heritage and connections and kept in regular contact with his birth country at first through the annual summer vacations to stay with his grandparents in County Meath and regular trips to friends and family in the nation's capital and then later when he began to teach regularly at The Dublin National College of Art & Design from 1977 until he became the Principal Lecturer at Chelsea School of Art in 1980.

During this 3 year period Tim would spend two-week blocks in Dublin teaching printmaking and contributing to the Fine Art Department of the University. Whilst there he made many lifetime friends and artistic contacts and shared with them his enthusiasm for life and art and especially the discipline of print.

He had three major solo exhibitions in Dublin in his lifetime. The first of these at The Projects Art Centre in 1977, then again at the David Hendricks Gallery in 1981 and in 1982 he showed at The Dublin Graphics Studio.

Between April and June 2000 The Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin mounted the exhibition 'Mirror Man: Prints by Tim Mara,' a collection of screenprints, etchings and lithographs selected by the artist Albert Irvin that was a posthumous retrospective of the Artist's works from all periods of his career and included the donation of eight original prints to the Museum from the Mara family.

The exhibition was hugely successful and generated a very positive reaction as many of the prints had not been seen before in Ireland and this was the first time a comprehensive retrospective selection of his work had been presented there.

In the introduction to the exhibition's information sheet is an essay written by the artist, friend and longtime collaborator of Tim's, Chris Plowman. It says:

"Tim Mara was born in Dublin in 1948 and it is fitting that his family and The Irish Museum of Modern Art have worked together to pay tribute to him with this exhibition. The selection of works chosen by his friend Bert Irvin is a celebration of his life and art and demonstrates his unwavering commitment to the medium of printmaking. This is rare in contemporary practice and Mara used a profoundly intellectual dimension to the processes he used"

The Dublin 'Mirror Man' exhibition then travelled to various venues throughout Ireland in an edited state, most notably large showings at The University of Ulster and Crawford Municipal Art Gallery in Cork.

 
© Text: Mark Hampson / Images: Belinda Mara
 
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