County Cork artist Ken Parker's hands are rarely idle,working in a wide range of media and materials to create his unique form of artwork,you could only describe him as 'passionate.' 'I love to make art, working on my prints and sculpture,is as essential to me as eating and breathing'.
Until recently Ken was additionally consumed with working with others.In 'troubles era' Belfast initially, followed by all Ireland and the US, Ken ran his 'special' workshops.Using various materials and artforms such as concrete sculpture, murals, printmaking, glasswork etc.,an endless assortment of ideas were brought to schools, community centers even prisons, bringing people and communities together for rare creative experiences. 'Everyone has the ability to create something unique,I help them draw it out.' Early career work in the jewellery trade, leading to a lengthy period of self employed engraver of fine metals,and running a retail business eventually led to dissatisfaction and of being unfulfilled. 'I got the chance to return to art school as 'mature student' and I haven't looked back.'
Ultimately gaining a Masters Degree in Fine Art at the University of Ulster at Belfast in 1990,a new career began.Ken continues to exhibit his prints & sculpture and also facilitates workshops,both in Ireland and the US.
2D sculpture is how Ken describes printmaking! Using re-cycled and found objects in the making of his large dynamic collograph prints,they are very much 'hand made' 'I enjoy being literally in touch with the work,not separated by brush or other instrument.' His other printmaking major,the silkscreen process,is used on its own and also with collograph to form a hybrid highly unique to the artist,the collo/silkscreen print.Making prints up to 4m square in some cases,this is very sophisticated,accomplished work.
Past experience,working with groups of adults and children using mainly newspaper and tape to makesimple sculpture,gave a lasting expertize and ability to create in 3D form.'I shifted to concrete whilst working in the US,people were interested in sculpture for their gardens,paper sculpture wouldn't work!.' Ken's recent work,in the form of morphed human and animal characteristics,is an exploration of the animal/physical,quality/energy of the human form.
For appointments with the artist, call +353 (0)87 3120994
The Ken Parker Gallery at The Trident Hotel,Kinsale ,Co.Cork, Ireland.
Telephone: +353 (0)21 477 9300
The Ken Parker Printmaking Studio Factory Lane,Bandon,Co Cork, Ireland.
Telephone: +353 (0)23 42973