Ian Kelly is an artist living and working in East Clare, specializing in bog-wood sculpture.
He holds a Degree in Fine Art, 1991, graduating from the Limerick School of Art and Design.
Ian has exhibited throughout Ireland, North America, and Cyprus.
My work involves bringing the ancient material of bog wood back to life in a new form. It is both a challenging and enchanting medium to work with, taking it from its raw form to a highly finished state demands a physical and emotional investment.
The wood and myself are two parts to a union that strives to create an entity outside of us both. Without the wood my hands and the chisels can create and express nothing. Chance and the bog-lands provide this precious medium.
The influences on my work are varied, with the main sources derived from the locality I am from, and aspects of my life - death, love and a struggle for spiritual freedom. I try to be true to the medium itself and the logic of form.
It takes time to read the wood and to recognize the potential that lies within before removing the excess material to reveal its character. Although I work in other bog-woods (Bog Yew and Bog Pine), the oak emanates the greatest power, once queen of Ireland's ancient forests it has lain dormant for more than 4,000 years, protected and preserved in the heart of the bog-lands and providing me with the possibility of reawakening it in a new form.