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Frank Boyce

Winner Challenge 2021

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Frank Boyce is an Artist, Teacher and Maker living in Northwest Ireland.
He completed his BA hons in Fine and Applied Art in the University of Ulster, Belfast in 2001 and continued his studies with postgraduate studies in Web Design and Electronic Media.
The Artist worked as a tutor in a community education setting with 'Create A Link'. This group is part of a state funded program run by the Health Service Executive, and it offers rehabilitative experiences through the medium of art for people living with mental health issues. Working with the group, Frank helped to develop a collection of work for an exhibition, including animation and a short film on the theme of Mental Health and Disability as part of the European Year of People with Disabilities, 2003.
Frank completed his Postgraduate Certificate in Education in Art at University of Ulster Coleraine and has been teaching Art and Design at Post Primary level since 2003. He enjoys teaching art with teenagers aged 13-18 years, in particular helping others unlock their creativity in order to grow as young adults.
Having spent 7 years training in various Martial arts such as Jujitsu, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Krav Maga, Frank learned much from these experiences and consequently, themes and ideas from eastern philosophy recur in his work.
The Artist has a strong interest in food security, Biodiversity and climate change and has spent the years from 2010-2020 raising a family with his wife and building a permaculture garden and food forest in Northwest Donegal. During this time he planted over 3000 trees and bushes for food, coppiced wood and berries.
Having returned to producing Art during the first lockdown of the Pandemic, Frank's work continues to explore themes such as the human condition, politics, religion and social issues.
Language and how we use it to ascribe meaning is central to his work. The Artist is interested in posing questions through the subject of his work, but also through his process and the materials he uses. Often using found objects or materials that have been repurposed.
In his current work, the shadow figure of the burned man is prominent. This scarred and charred figure is a watcher, a sentinel who acts as witness. This figure represents, for the artist, the current lot of the zero contract worker, locked out of housing by high rents and low wages, no pensions or safety net. These observers watch at a remove. Their future is uncertain in a world in flux. This figure is both the Jungian archetype and the shadow that tribal peoples fear can be stolen or trapped. The burned man is the mirror the artist uses to reflect the world to the viewer.

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