Mark Kavanagh
Irish Contemporary Figure Painter: Biography, Paintings.

Mark Kavanagh "Rasher" (b.1977)

The contemporary Irish figure painter and still life artist Mark Kavanagh - known as "Rasher" - was born in Bray, County Wicklow in 1977. Keen to become an artist, he became a night-time cleaner so he could practice painting during the day. Despite having no formal art training, Rasher staged a successful one-man show in Dubin. This led to significant media attention including an appearance on RTE's Late Late Show. Since then, Rasher has established himself as one of the most interesting contemporary figures in Irish painting. He got the nickname "Rasher" as a child. One summer, his blonde hair and sunburned back elicited the comment "...he looks like a streaky rasher."




As an artist, Rasher is noted for his detailed and brightly coloured human figures. This figure painting - some as large as seven feet by five feet - express the themes of love, loss as well as the evolution of landscapes. He acknowledges the influence of several famous painters in his artwork, including: Caravaggio, Salvador Dali, Francis Bacon and Edward Hopper. In addition, he is a highly skilled practitioner of still-life painting and flower compositions, some of which are believed to be influenced by Italian Old Masters. Lastly, Rasher has also completed a number of paintings for the Scottish whisky brand 'Jameson'.



Rasher has held solo exhibitions at several venues, including: Enniskerry, Co. Wicklow (1995); Open House RTE (1998); Apollo Gallery, Dublin (2000); Blue Leaf Gallery, Pembroke St, Dublin (2000); National Gallery, Dublin (2005); Bold Art Gallery, Galway (2005); Chateau Marmont Hotel, Los Angeles (2006). Gaining in popularity - one painting was auctioned for more than €16,000 - collectors of Rasher's paintings include: Tom Cruise, Colin Farrell and Princess Haya of Jordan. Mark Kavanagh, alias "Rasher" lives and works in County Wicklow.

Most Expensive Painting By Rasher (Mark Kavanagh)

The auction record for a work by Mark Kavanagh was set in 2012, when his painting, entitled Poppies, was sold at Whytes, in Dublin, for €4,600.

More Information About Visual Arts in Ireland

• For details of other figurative painters, see: Irish Artists: Paintings and Biographies.
• For more about contemporary painters in Ireland like Mark Kavanagh, see: Irish Art Guide.
• For more about contemporary art, see: Homepage.

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