Living in a time where news from wherever on our planet reaches us with the speed of light, we theoretically could know everything that
is happening at any moment and any place in the world. But the excess of information is so overwhelmingly large that we prefer, or even are
compelled, to close our eyes for most of it. We are constantly confronted with the unbearable “heaviness” of being. Tom Molloy bases most of his
work on existing imagery or found material: news material from the Internet and media of political and socio-economic interest. These sources, he then crafts into art objects that address the
predicaments of humanity and those whose lives are radically affected by events over which have no control. Without any form of prejudice or judgement Molloy contemplates the way the world appears through the lens. He illustrates his vision in a sober, inevitable way. He shows us the eternally recurring facts of life, allowing us no chance to look away,
no room for indifference, or deliberate ignorance and leaves it to us to consider their implications as a burden or a benefit. In the exhibition the artist presents Untitled (2014) an installation of 1,000 small coloured photographs, meticulously cut out by hand and placed on a 10 meter long narrow table, its top at eye level. The pictures are downloaded from
the Internet, and show us the unknown, unnamed, anonymous human beings who have been involved in unspeakable violence and suffering: refugees,homeless people, prostitutes, victims of war, heroin addicts, drunks, child labourers, famine victims.
We cannot ignore their cry for attention: the one legged beauty who won the Miss Landmine contest, the homeless veteran with his cardboard sign Will work for food, the innocent child carrying a machine gun. These small fragile paper renderings are a collective cry for attention, from a source we may have become deaf to – until Molloy puts them here
under our very eyes: unignorable, and unmissable.
In our increasingly fractured and fractious age, where political and personal conflicts are rife, what is the most appropriate role for the artist? Should artists work to distract and beguile our minds away
from the most pressing global issues? Or to draw attention to them in such a way that we consider our own roles and the way we live now; to make work that is both political and Political – in the personal
and the public senses of the word? Tom Molloy is firmly in the latter camp.