ALAN PHELAN studied at Dublin City University and Rochester Institute of Technology, New York. As a visual artist, his practice involves the production of objects, participatory projects, curating and writing. These all inform, combine and contribute to an interest in the narrative potential surrounding an artwork. This can be exploited or explored from actual and historical events, ideas, things and places as well as their fictional counterparts. Working in the museum and archive sector has shaped this approach somewhat but more as a counterpoint than agency.

The work is realised in numerous ways, including sculpture, film, museum interventions, public art and collaborations with other artists, writers and curators. Recent examples of this would be the “Handjob” project which began with a collection of hand photographs gathered on social media. It was first presented as a 10-artist gallery show where all works were re-made by me and displayed in a complex narrative based layout. This led to the film “Edwart & Arlette” which adapted and re-narrativised a Sherlock Holmes story, using words on the found images as dialogue. Sources collided to create a functioning narrative scenario as the melodrama the detective story matched the common source of the hand photographs in teenage self-harming hubs. Current projects include a commission for The Hugh Lane Dublin City Gallery, Dublin where the dialogue from a feature film has been re-narrativised create a counter-factual story of Roger Casement in exile 25 years after 1916. The film counters dominant historical narratives of commemoration to instead deal with betrayal of ideals.