The Permanent Collections

Painting Collection

WalterVerling (1930-) Goat Island

Goat Island

Verling, Walter

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1992, oil on board, 51 x 40 cm (acquired by the gallery in 1993)

Walter Verling, born in New Ross, Co Wexford, in 1930,  now lives and works in Youghal, Co. Cork. As well as supporting a career as a professional artist, Verling spent many years teaching in the art department of Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, where he lectured to generations of primary school teachers.



Looking at Goat Island you notice figures strolling along the sand, suggested in a simple series of brushstrokes. With only a few strokes of colour, in a style reminiscent of the Impressionist painters (such as Claude Monet or Pierre Auguste Renoir), the artist provides us with enough information to ‘fill in the details’ and complete the image. If you look closely at Goat Island you will find a scored line running horizontally across the picture, several inches from the top of the board. Verling, dissatisfied with the composition, decided to chop off the part of the painting above this line. However, he later reconsidered, leaving us to enjoy the grass-flecked cliff-tops. It is interesting to see such an explicit exposure of the doubts and questions a painter entertains as they attempt to create a harmonious composition.

Several of Verling’s paintings and drawings are represented in the Limerick City Gallery of Art Collection. You may wish to have a look at Sky II, which depicts frothing cumulus clouds rushing across a vast sky, and compare this painting with the more tranquil Sky I.

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