Mother's Tankstation is the name of an innovative new project in contemporary visual art in Dublin. The gallery (the tank), a renovated factory, is situated (the station) on the edge of the old city, adjacent to the vast Guinness factory and close to Heuston Station, IMMA and the National Museum at Collins Barracks. It is served by the Luas, the relevant stop being 'Museum'. The station is not about passing trade, its location tacitly acknowledges that a visit to the tank involves some commitment on behalf of the audience and it consciously intends the expansion of a city's art-going habits. To those visitors, we will endeavour to repay their intrepidness with exhibitions of intelligence, quality and passion. Projects will run for a greater length of time than those of the conventional commercial spaces, to allow for greater breathing time for the artists and audience alike.
Mother's Mission - The intention behind the creation of the fictional designate; Mother's is the characterisation of the 'project', it is not a reflection of the role of any individual. The 'project'; Mother's Tankstation jointly nurtures, along with its engaged artists, the delicate and often awkward offspring of 'new art' and helps to provide a contextualising forum and a discursive support structure for the introduction of unfamiliar or complex practices to an Irish audience.
The artists represented by Mother's Tankstation, as well as those with whom it will occasionally work (Mother's off-side), have in common; extraordinary commitment to the vision of art, and a rigorous sense of individuality and individualism. They are a mixture of international and Irish artists of all levels of career, and have been selected entirely on the resolute character of their individual practices. Curated group exhibitions, based on ‘kunstverein’ models, are a crucial dynamic, furthering the range of artists and galleries with whom Mother’s is forging international links.
Mother's Tankstation advocates the conceptual notion that 'idea dictates form', and thus foregrounds no particular medium, believing that quality rises to the surface despite fashion and fad, in fact that the inverse is true, that quality dictates fashion. In the simplest terms Mother's Tankstation intends to fracture the expected mould of the Irish commercial art gallery.
The creative force behind Mother's Tankstation is the artist Finola Jones, who not only understands the project as an extension of her own art practice, but as being run by an artist, in collaborative negotiation with its artists, for artists. Although the work of this new 'artspace' may look and function much like that of an alternative 'museum', or non-profit gallery (or sometimes even the public exhibition of a 'private collection' - Mother's own), in the strictest sense it is a commercial gallery, but it is self-funded by art for art. Any profits generated by the sale of works (after the artists have been paid) are to be invested into the continuance of the gallery, the promotion of the artists, at home and internationally (Mother's abroad) and to take increasingly daring steps. Participation in art fairs is central to the gallery’s policy, and is approached with the same intended rigor as the ‘home’ exhibitions.
Mother's mission is to fill an important gap in the art scene in Dublin, which commonly overlooks work of complexity in the commercial context. Although Mother's intends to familiarise new and more established art collectors with the idea of 'difficult-to-collect' art, sales are not its primary objective. Mother's expects its artists to produce and exhibit work primarily driven by integrity and quality before commercial viability.
Mother’s publishes a case-bound ‘annual’ with commissioned critical texts of each year’s programme.