Active Forgetting – Oona Hyland

7 Jun 2024 – 30 Jun 2024

Regular hours

17:30 – 21:30
14:30 – 17:30

Free admission

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Contemporary Art from Ireland 1,
Installation, drawing, video, printmaking


Oona Hyland’s Active Forgetting is the first of two exhibitions of Irish contemporary art at Wolf & Galentz.

Oona Hyland’s Active Forgetting is the first of two exhibitions of Irish contemporary art at Wolf & Galentz.

Korean musician Sung Sangsik will provide the musical accompaniment to the vernissage.

Thematically central to Oona Hyland’s work is the forgotten and repressed, that which is hushed up, people who have been silenced. She is particularly interested in exploring artistic means that do not just depict the processual nature of forgetting and remembering, but rather bring it to life, lets us experience it.

Based on her preferred artistic media – printmaking, mokuhanga ( Japanese woodcut printing), cyanotype– the artist creates installative, kinetic works with drawing, sculpture and video, with which she attempts to make traumatisation representable and tangible through movement and narrative. She contrasts static and stillness – silence – with the dialogue that takes place in time and between people.

In her work Active Forgetting, for which the exhibition is named, she concerns herself with the institutional abuse in Irish mother and baby homes and the associated so-called Magdalene Laundries, where unmarried pregnant women were interned and coerced into perform forced labour (from the late 19th century until the 1990s). Many of the women and their children died in the homes, often from malnutrition, and were buried in anonymous mass graves. This has only been publicly addressed in Ireland since the 2010s. Oona Hyland’s own mother gave birth to her eldest brother in one such home, the Bon Secours Mother and Baby Home in Tuam, Ireland, which was not talked about in her family for a long time.


Oona Hyland studied Cinematography at Ballyfermot College of Further Education (BCFE) Dublin, Irish Art History at Trinity College Dublin (TCD, MPhil 2017) and Art Research and Collaboration at the Institute of Art Design + Technology Dublin (IADT, MA 2022). She has participated in numerous residencies in recent years, including Fundació Joan Miró, Agalab Amsterdam, BKN Sweden and Edition Basel. In 2021 she was shortlisted for the On Paper Print Award in Barcelona. In 2022 she received the DLR Emerging Artist Award in Dublin. In 2021 she was elected to the Royal Society of Painters/Printmakers in London. She is a member of Graphic Studio Dublin and 9 Dragonheads. Oona Hyland lives and works in Dublin.

The exhibition is supported by Culture ireland

Exhibiting artistsToggle

Oona Hyland


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