Desmond Carrick RHA


Desmond Carrick

Desmond Carrick Artist ( 1928-2012 )

Dublin born painter Desmond Carrick RHA studied under Seán Keating and Maurice MacGonigal at the National College of Art, Dublin. He worked primarily in oils and watercolours producing many vibrant Landscapes. In 1968, he was elected a full member of the Royal Hibernian Academy of Arts in Ireland. He became one of the institution’s most eminent and active members. For forty-four years his paintings were a familiar sight on the academy walls, particularly during the annual exhibitions. His role as secretary for the academy in the late 1970s saw his skills as an administrator come to the fore and he played a crucial role in facilitating the transformation of the old academy site into the modern space it is today. He sat on various academy committees and was central to the process of electing new members, as well as the coordination of the annual show, in which he exhibited since 1951.

Carrick’s journey towards becoming an artist was gradual. He followed in his father’s footsteps with a career in the Guinness brewery from 1945 but pursued his interest in art through classes at NCAD where Seán Keating and Maurice MacGonigal were his tutors. He won the coveted Taylor Scholarship in 1956; a prize which facilitated a trip to Spain and ignited a lifelong passion for light and colour. Often in the company of fellow academian James Nolan, he would continue this pursuit in weekend trips around Dublin and to the West of Ireland and later with regular trips to Spain and France. While continuing to work in Guinness his talents as an artist were recognised. Bryan Guinness, later Lord Moyne, director of the brewing company, became a patron and he was commissioned to paint a large mural depicting the brewing process for the company’s visitor centre in 1958. In the late 1950s Carrick designed and constructed his own home and studio at Killakee. In 2009 Gandon Editions published a profusely illustrated text on Carrick’s life and career, The Lie of the Land. This brought to light his journey and celebrated the diversity of his skills as an artist in oil, watercolour, sculpture and stained glass