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    Stephen McKenna (1939–2017) Photo credit: Amelia Stein

    The death of artist Stephen McKenna has been announced by The Kerlin Gallery.  The London born artist studied at The Slade in the 1960’s.  Rather than conforming to the era’s dominant trends of pop art and conceptualism, he defied expectation by turning instead to figurative painting – unfashionable in London at that time – and began to develop a unique painterly practice informed by diverse art historical precedents.

    He moved to Germany in 1971 and, after living and working in numerous European countries, settled in Co. Carlow in the 1990’s.  The impact of this extensive continental travel is evident in McKenna’s painting, not only in its subject matter – though European cityscapes and landscapes are frequently represented – but in the lyricism of his approach, artfully fusing classical and romantic painting traditions. He died in Co. Carlow on May 4.

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