Running from May through to September 2021, in various shop windows, the
Arts Centre and Library throughout the coastal town. Dungarvan Art Trail is
delighted to present The Vertigo Project by internationally acclaimed, locally
based, dye transfer printer and artist Jean Curran.
The Dungarvan Art Trail, conceived by Jean Curran, has been brought to life with
the generous support of Creative Ireland Waterford, the Arts Office, Waterford
City and County Council, as well as the input and openness of local business and
The Dungarvan Art Trail initiative has created an opportunity for viewers to reappraise their connection with the space in which the art is displayed and aims
to deepen the level of engagement between the community, local business and
A series of 18 original handmade dye transfer prints by Irish artist Jean Curran – a
work of editing and re-presentation that takes key scenes from Alfred Hitchcock’s
Vertigo to reveal the artistry of the film in a fresh and novel way.
Produced with the full co-operation of the Hitchcock estate, Curran first edited select
frames from a rare original Technicolor dye imbibition print of Vertigo from 1958,
and then printed them using the same dye transfer process by which the movie was
This experiential exhibition of dye transfer photographic prints in Dungarvan is
made up of scenes from Sir Alfred Hitchcock’s Technicolor masterpiece Vertigo. This
is the first showing of these prints in Ireland, they have previously been exhibited in
New York, Los Angeles, Paris and London. Through the work the artist is paying
homage to a golden era of film making and to Hitchcock, one of the greatest film
makers of all time.
Vertigo was first released on the 9th of May, 1958 and is now largely recognized as
Hitchcock’s greatest achievement. It tells the story of a police detective (Jimmy
Stewart) who falls obsessively in love with the woman he has been paid to follow
(Kim Novak). Failing to prevent Novak’s character from jumping to her death
because of his vertigo, Stewart spirals into an ever darker state of despair until a
chance sighting of a girl who resembles Novak reignites his passion and unravels
a complex web of deceit and crime.
The film’s underlying themes of voyeurism, eroticism and dark emotions are
portrayed delicately and with great intelligence through Hitchcock’s rigorously
composed shots while his use of color moves the story along into masterfully layered
Recognized by film critics and connoisseurs for the remarkable care with which each
scene was composed, the single frames and set-ups of Vertigo reveal Hitchcock’s
aesthetic not just as cinematic but as photographic, prefiguring and influencing the
work of contemporary artists from Eggleston to Cindy Sherman.
Brought to new life in richly luminous prints Curran’s Vertigo project is a fitting
tribute to the film, the master craftsmanship that made it as well as an original work
of art in its own right.
About Jean Curran
Irish artist Jean Curran (b. 1981) is one of only a small handful of working dye
transfer printers in the world and the only artist to be using dye transfer printing
as the basis for her contemporary practice. She works from her family farm in
Kilmacthomas, County Waterford.
Curran’s work is rooted firmly in the history of early colour film and
photographic works. Her practice focuses on the re-contextualisation of early
colour films and of re-presenting them as still frame photographic images.
Her vibrant and rich prints invite the viewers into the spaces they’ve known as
moving images and without force maneuvers, the viewer deeper and further into
each selected scene.
The isolation of a specific aesthetic aspect of cinema also structures Curran’s
work, which is delivered through an aesthetic filter that both replicates and
celebrates earlier modes of colour and image creation.
The process by which Curran makes her prints is deeply laborious and the time,
technical knowledge, and attention that she bestows on each colour print recall a
painter or sculptors dedication to their art as expressed through the process of
In this way, Curran not only returns to earlier modes of image making but also
older ways of conceptualising artistic production itself that involves nurturing
the relationship between labor and reverence for a subject.
Curran’s transformation of movie frames gives us a chance to think about
photography, its technological transitions and myriad points of connection to
film, cinema history, and painting.
Curran is represented by; Danziger Gallery, New York & Michael Hoppen Gallery
‘In recent times, people have been unable to go into galleries, indeed some people do not
visit galleries at all. The Dungarvan Art Trail places art central to our daily lives, as people
pass buildings which they often don’t give a second glance to. Having an artist of Jean
Curran’s ability to re-imaging spaces and to open conversations about creativity,
imagination and art is a great opportunity.’
Margaret Organ, Arts Officer, Waterford City & Council
“As one of only a handful of dye transfer printers in the world, and the only contemporary
artist using this almost obsolete craft as part of my practice, I am thrilled to have the
opportunity to show the works in my home county and local town”.
Creative Waterford is delighted to sponsor this fantastic project as part of our Creative
Communities initiative. The collaboration between Jean Curran, the local authority and the business community brings vibrancy and life to the town of Dungarvan and helps us
consider how intrinsic creativity is in our lives, and how the arts can be accessed by the
public in different ways. – Katherine Collins, Creative Waterford Coordinator