David Holohan has suffered for his art. Now middle-aged, he has been plagued by illness and his paintings over the years have reflected his mood.
His portrayals of residents in the former St Canice’s pyschistric hospital in the city described by him as “old men sying in chairs” are spellbinding, a little edgy, compelling and hugely collectable. His line drawings, of a wide range of subjects, are equally rivetting and he is able, like few others, to get to the core of whatever he paints, draws or sketches.
He is just innately talented and went on scholarship to the National College of Art and Design, Dublin and in his second year gained another scholarship to the University of Minnesota.
His many admirers will be delighted to hear that he is opening a new exhibition of works at Kilkenny Castle during the Kilkenny Arts Festival Festival.
From August 9 to 18 his brilliance can be seen in the corridor over the Butler Gallery. The one featured here, By Mount Leinster, is breathtaking and the sky is just so full of possibilities. He used a mixture of oil, pastel and watercolour to extract the very best from the subject matter and it’s as if the sky is the road.
He is one of the few artists today that can wow you and he seems to be going through a golden period and dare I say it, getting better with age having been born in 1956.
It is heartwarming to see him in such fine form. His work has changed dramatically from detail portraits to loose interpretaions of city and landscape.
The more recent work reflects different surroundings, good mental health and a beautiful young daughter. By not following any particular medium or medium style, David continues to try to retain a vibrancy and freshness in his approach to each new piece. He doesn’t confine himself to space.