Institute of Art Design + Technology
Dún Laoghaire

Michelle Mc Geown 

BA [Hons] Art

Michelle is a Louth based artist. She specialises in sculpture, creating artworks from cattle bones. She grew up in a cattle farming family, she developed an interest in nature and became exposed to life cycles. ​ Materials are the centre point of Michelle's work, she uses found and/or pre-existing objects which inspire her intuitive approach. Michelle is influenced by the cyclical nature of the natural world; it brings comfort when surrounded by the existentialist mentality in modern society. ​ Michelle's work has been shown in a student group exhibition In the making: Aorta hosted by the Pallas Studio Projects in 2024.​ ​ ​

Project Description

In this project the domineering element is bones. The material was sourced from an abattoir where they would have been disposed of. The theme of mortality is present in my work along with its conflicting emotions regarding the meat industry. ​

The finality of mortality is something that I am discussing in my work through the materials. I was drawn to the idea of using bones that are in the stages of decomposition and beginning a new transitional phase of their existence. In this project, I interpret the bones' natural curvature, creating a piece informed by the materials' organic shape. In a way the bones act as an allegory for existentialism, specifically examining the linear existence paved in society which contrasts the cyclical nature on the material that is exhibiting it. ​

“Navigating queer identities in relation to contemporary art”

The Title of my thesis is “Navigating queer identities in relation to contemporary art.” I have chosen three different artists who express different experiences in the queer community due to cultural context, but all have a connection to America. Leilah Babirye a queer asylum seeker from Uganda who is now living in Brooklyn, New York. I will be discussing how Babirye came to become a refugee in America and how that informs her art. Cassils a Canadian Trans person who lives in California, I will be exploring their work which is centred around the prejudices faced by trans people today. Lydia Pettit a queer woman originally from Maryland, who lives in London, UK, her work is biographical and comments on the difficulties of self-acceptance as a queer woman today. These artists produce work that highlights their queer experience and as a result give awareness to others who share aspects of their background.