Dan Shipsides

Visual Arts

Dan Shipsides is an artist based in Orchid Studios, Belfast. He is a former committee member at Catalyst Arts and Bbeyond. Shipsides also teaches on the MFA programme (Belfast School of Art).

Since 2004 he also works collaboratively with Neal Beggs as Shipsides and Beggs Projects. Dan Shipsides / Shipsides and Beggs Projects have exhibited nationally and internationally including;

ACCA, Melbourne (Desire Lines), CIAC, Carros, France (Frontiers & other songs of freedom), Ulster Museum (Art of the Troubles), The MAC, Belfast (Still not out of the woods), Aliceday Gallery, Brussels (Vigil | Star), Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol (Elastic Frontiers), Museum Contemporary Art, Sydney (Sporting Life), South London Gallery (Games & Theory), Castlefield Gallery, Manchester (Radical Architecture), Temple Bar Gallery, Dublin (Pioneers) Platform Guranti, Istanbul (Hit & Run), Konsthall C, Stockholm, Sweden (Under plattan, ängen!), Riga Sculpture Quadrennial, Latvia (European Space), Melbourne International Biennial (Signs of Life) and Smart Project Space, Amsterdam (Endure).

“I’m interested in creative and critical relationships to place, spaces, encounters and events. The processes of my work reflect and embody adventures and misadventures in ‘real life’ which often includes climbing and mountaineering alongside the day-to-day activities of life and an open response to the politicized landscape of urban Belfast where I live.

Within many of the works relating to the politicized nature of space in Belfast I’m interested in appropriating and disturbing the emblematic phraseology and iconography of place and rolling this up together with my contemporary lived experience, which for me includes anything, nothing is off topic, but especially the phenomenologically rich activity of climbing and mountaineering alongside more mundane aspects of daily life and events of place. It is a strange brew where a song sung by my child might sit next to the
drama or serenity of a mountain crag and the news of yet another rhetorical impasse at Stormont. Somewhere beneath it all there undoubtedly twists a form of the ‘sublime’. As part of this approach I am interested in colliding significant historic periods and places; the years around WW1, the 1970’s and the present; the Italian Dolomites and Ulster. I do so with a particular concern for the philosophical, political and the visual possibilities of meshing out-of-sync times, places and events.

For me the term landscape has expanded, spreading from the hills and mountains to include the imaged streets around me and also then to events, people, places and incidents that register in my life. All this is political, all this is present in my here and now and all this is connected.”