Kevin McAleenan responds to Ireland and beyond in beautifully balanced blocks of colour. His paintings actively shift between realism and abstraction — between what he remembers and what you think you see — bringing you fresh appreciation with each viewing.

Born in Banbridge, County Down, Kevin graduated in 1985 with ‘BA Hons Art and Design’ from Ulster University. He was one of the country’s top commercial illustrators for 15 years, working primarily in advertising and publishing – illustrating children’s favourite ‘Horrid Henry’ was a career highlight.
Continue reading about Kevin
Seeking a more personal outlet, he began painting. This is Kevin’s 2Oth year as a professional artist, exhibiting original works in selected galleries throughout Ireland and beyond at leading international art fairs and also undertaking many private commissions.

“Kevin's works are very much for both the national and International market, as we have seen recently in New York and also London. The feedback that we received and the number of paintings purchased in these two cities was overwhelming.” Sol Gallery, Dublin.

His work is in the collections of the Office of Public Works Dublin, The Open University, Queen’s University Belfast and in private European, Far Eastern and American collections. A growing collection of limited edition giclée prints of selected works can be purchased here.
1962             Born, Banbridge Co.Down
1982-85       University of Ulster, BA Hons Art and Design

Solo Exhibitions

2001             Java Gallery Belfast
2003             Manor Fine Arts Banbridge
2005             McGilloway Gallery Derry
2006             McGilloway Gallery Derry
2007             ‘Speech Matters’ Exhibition, Europa Hotel Belfast
2008             McGilloway Gallery Derry
2011             McKenna Gallery Omagh
2012             Sol Art Gallery Dublin

Selected Group Exhibitions

2004             Gallery M Lurgan
2004             Waterfront Hall Belfast ‘In it there is…’
2004             Gallery M Lurgan Three Artists Exhibition
2004             Waring Gallery Moira
2005             Gallery 148 Holywood
2005             McGilloway Gallery Derry
2005             The Royal Ulster Academy Annual Exhibition Belfast
2006             Lorca Gallery USA
2006             Dog House Gallery Comber
2007             Gallery M Lurgan
2007             Cong Art Gallery
2007             Tom Caldwell Gallery Summer Exhibition
2008             Tom Caldwell Gallery Joint Exhibition
2008             ‘Art of Caring Exhibition’ Belfast
2009             Cong Art Gallery
2009             McGilloway Gallery Derry
2009             McKenna Gallery Omagh
2009             Castle Upton Gallery ‘Coasts’ Exhibition
2009             Anna Cheyne Visual Art Awards Exhibition Lisburn
2009             McKenna Gallery invited artists Exhibition
2009             Doghouse Gallery
2009             Tom Caldwell Gallery Summer & Christmas Exhibitions
2010             Doghouse Gallery ‘Heads’ Exhibition invited artists
2010             Cong Art Gallery
2010             McGilloway Gallery Derry Summer & Christmas Exhibitions
2010             Castle Upton Gallery Summer Exhibition
2010             ‘Art of Caring’ Exhibiton Belfast
2010             Tom Caldwell Gallery Belfast Summer Exhibition
2010             Mckenna Gallery Omagh Winter exhibition
2010             Sol Gallery Dublin Christmas Show
2011             Castle Upton Gallery
2011             Tom Caldwell Gallery Belfast Summer Exhibition
2011             The Royal Ulster Academy Annual Exhibition Belfast
2012             ‘Art of Caring Exhibition’ Belfast
2012             London with Sol Art Gallery
2013             Sol Art Gallery Dublin
2013             London with Sol Art Gallery
2014             VUE Exhibition at the Royal Hibernian Academy Dublin
2014             Milan with Sol Art Gallery
2014             Sol Art Gallery Dublin
2015             London with Sol Art Gallery
2015             VUE Exhibition at the Royal Hibernian Academy Dublin
2015             Singapore with Sol Art Gallery
2015             Hong Kong with Sol Art Gallery
2016             London with Sol Art Gallery
2016             Bristol with Sol Art Gallery
2016             New York with Sol Art Gallery
2016             VUE Exhibition at the Royal Hibernian Academy Dublin
2016             London with Sol Art Gallery
2017             New York with Sol Art Gallery
2017             Bristol with Sol Art Gallery
2017             London with Sol Art Gallery
2017             Chicago with Sol Art Gallery
2018             Boyle Arts Festival
2018             VUE Exhibition RHA Dublin with Sol Art Gallery


Office of Public Works Dublin
The Open University
Queen’s University Belfast
Creative process
Kevin’s process is a lesson in meditative patience with original pieces taking up to two months to complete. Compositions are initially resolved by pencil in Kevin’s sketch book, before being drawn to scale on canvas.

Paintings begin with either a flat red underpainting — to provide a contrasting base for colours, or a tonal red underpainting — to indicate areas light and shade.
Each colour block is then added meticulously — balanced and counterbalanced. Blocks will be painted over many times in the process, until the painting feels right.“

Painting is like a high-wire act for me, constantly balancing what I see on one side with what I feel about it on the other. My paintings aim to actively shift before your eyes, teetering on the tensions between realism and abstraction to keep the balance.”

This simplified animated sequence shows eight weeks of work in a matter of moments.
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