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Renowned TUS Modern Art Collection to Debut in Luan Gallery for ‘Symbols of Subject’ Exhibition

A series of works from the Technological University of the Shannon’s (TUS) renowned modern art collection will feature in a special Luan Gallery exhibition which launches tomorrow (Wednesday, September 20) and will run until November 16.

The exhibition, called Symbols of Subject, brings together select works from acclaimed contemporary Irish artists such as William Crozier, Louis le Brocquy, Tony O’Malley, Jane O’Malley and Corban Walker, as well contributions from emerging designers and visual artists from TUS’s graduating class of 2023.

Symbols of Subject marks the first time works from TUS’s modern art collection, which is usually on display throughout the corridors, lecturer halls and open spaces of its Athlone campus, will be exhibited outside of the university setting.

The core concept is that art is both important and for everyone, and as such it is intrinsic to education, with the corollary that students, staff and visitors should be exposed to the best of contemporary art.

Speaking ahead of the exhibition launch TUS President Prof. Vincent Cunnane said, “The Luan Gallery serves as an ideal backdrop for this exhibition of the TUS modern art collection and reminds us of the power of art to inspire, to evoke emotions, and to transcend boundaries. It is a privilege for our students to also display their work in such an inspirational setting.

“It reminds us that our roots are firmly planted in the communities we serve, and our commitment to preserving and advancing our cultural heritage is unwavering. Our region is not only a place of historical significance but also a wellspring of inspiration, where tradition and innovation converge to shape our collective identity.”

Carmel Duffy, Luan Gallery manager, said, “Symbols of Subject marks a unique collaboration between Luan Gallery and TUS, which sees selected work from this important collection exhibited outside the university campus for the first time since its acquisition, providing an excellent opportunity for the gallery to showcase the work featured in the exhibition to the local community and visitors to Athlone.

“The diversity of contemporary artwork in this significant collection and the timeline of the investment spanning almost fifty years, are a testament to TUS’s support of the visual arts in Ireland and its commitment to the premise that art is for everyone.”

TUS’s modern art collection is the largest permanent exhibition of modern Irish art in the Midlands, with more than 150 works in total collected over half a century.

The collection contains paintings, prints, batiks and sculptures. The works vary from abstract to realism, their media from paint to glass and their themes include religion, science, engineering, portraiture, landscape, sport, still life, ideas and emotions.

The exhibition opening will be launched by TUS President Prof. Vincent Cunnane on Wednesday, September 20, 6pm, and will be followed by a drinks reception. All are welcome to attend.