Patrick O'Donnell

Contemporary Visual Artist


"The act of painting is itself an interpretation of things, a way of making sense of the world through the material of which it’s composed (eggs, rocks, wings, shells). And yet the world shows itself in matter, and by extension, matter shows us too: we get in our own way. Patrick O’Donnell’s paintings of star-speckled galactic skies display an implicit understanding of this. Dense layers of celestial blues and purples generate vistas of unimaginable scale, in extrapolation of landscape painting’s claims to a kind of endless visual command. And yet their drifting cosmic dusts and hazy lights connect, through the very medium of paint, the stuff of stars and of human composition: like the Pollock abstractions they loosely resemble, they’re self-portraits in matter, internal landscapes."

Ben Street, Zombieland Essay to accompany 32 Paintings Exhibition, Phoenix Arts, Brighton, Sussex, February 2013