The Sacrifice The Arcing of Fable to Faith in the Irish-Catholic Tradition This series has several intentions.
At its simplest, the imagery retells Irish tales Sharon listened to and read growing-up. On another level, the work comments on mid-twentieth century religion: the arcing of fantastical fable through blind faith.
Yet a subtext also exists, reflecting on the subversive influence on young girls by the Catholic Church and the mores of the era.
The work is titled The Sacrifice, not only alluding to the trials retold in folklore, but referencing the sacrifice of the Mass, the stunting of young women’s dreams, and the feminine psyche quashed in a male-dominated world.
The Communicant and After the Sacrifice are a dyptich recounting of a legend Sharon’s mother told her as a young child, lore that exemplifies that strange and antithetical elixir of Irish Catholic worship and superstition.
The artist has Louise O’Callaghan, her mother, to thank for the inspiration.
Rest her soul, we are not convinced Louise would approve of these interpretations.