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Audrey Gillespie

Born 1998 (Location)

Audrey Gillespie is an Irish fine artist from Derry, Northern Ireland. Currently living and creating in Belfast N.I. Her media include analogue photography, painting, printmaking and experimental practices in film, embroidery and textiles. Gillespie’s themes explore queerness, mortality and conflict with youth and anxiety through her current ongoing series titled ‘This Hurts’.1


Solo exhibitions

  • 2018, Not Drag, Abridged, Verbal Arts Centre, Derry. 
  • 2018, Big Wild Showcase, Menagerie bar, Belfast. 
  • ​2016, Women of The World festival, The Playhouse, Derry. 

Group exhibitions

  • Year, Title, Curator, Venue, City, Country (Listed chronologically)
  • 2022, Saturation, Crawford Arts Gallery, Cork
  • 2022, You Don’t Have To Be Loved, Online Exhibition, Abridged
  • 2021, Futures Photography Selected Artists, Melkweg, Amsterdam
  • 2021, Futures Irish Talent, The Library Project, Dublin
  • 2021-2022, This Hurts – Collection Common Market, Belfast
  • 2021, Equal Spaces (Outdoor) Pilots Row, Derry
  • 2021, Emergence IV’  QSS Gallery, Belfast
  • 2021, The Dreamer International Group Show, Millepiani, Rome. 2021
  • 2020, Ulster Fine Art Ba Degree Show, The Mac, Belfast, N.I. 2020
  • 2020, 104, Amina Malik Gallery, London. 2020
  • 2020, Portrait, Virtual Exhibition, Air Gallery, Manchester. 2020
  • 2019, Gender, Girls Girls Girls Collective, Prism Contemporary Gallery, Blackburn. 2019
  • 2019, Go Girl Collective, Golden Thread Gallery Pop Up, Castle Court Mall, Belfast. 2019
  • 2018, Iklektic, North West Regional Collage, End of Year Exhibition. The Playhouse, Derry. 2018
  • 2017, Winners Selection, Unison (touring): Queens Film Theatre Belfast & Holy Well Trust, Derry. 2017
  • 2017, Ormeau Baths Eagle Labs Launch, Ormeau Baths Belfast. 2017
  • 2017, AVA Festival Best Emerging Artist Showcase, Bulitt Hotel Belfast. 2017
  • 2017,  Trauma and Triumph, Go Girl Collective, Queen Street Studios, Belfast. 2017
  • 2016,  Share the Load, Go Girl Collective, Prism Studio 2, Belfast. 2016
  • 2015,  End of Year Exhibition, North West Regional Collage, Lawrence Building, Derry. 2015
  • 2015, Change works, Social Studios and Gallery Derry. 2015


  • This Hurts (2022) 

    ‘This Hurts’ explores obsession, release and fantasy. Running in circles, building patterns, constructing itself into a wormhole of questions. Questions that ease Audrey Gillespie and questions that haunt her. Vulnerability and fragility expose themselves throughout the work, in the form of subtext and saturation while she tries to snatch fleeting moments before they’re gone, clinging to whatever brings release. Audrey fixates her anxiety ridden dreams and overwhelming memories creating colour saturated objects and tender moments splayed out for her to remember, to acknowledge and accept.

    Audrey Gillespie is trying to understand why she desires to live through other things; masquerading herself as them through her photographs, bleeding her persona into theirs as they do onto her own. She fears she’ll spend a life time trying to become something else that she’ll never have gotten to know herself. Audrey fears that her art is just an unhealthy obsession put in place in for her to exploit her bad habits. As a young woman the tendency to obsess has been cemented into her being since she even consciously knew how to obsess at all.

    Audrey documents queer youth through her interactions, stumbling around Northern Ireland, driven by a hazy aesthetic. She invites the viewer to submerge into a world of her bleared emotions. Using lo-fi techniques to create an unpolished form, colours glaze over dark backdrops and she immerse into a self-constructed personalised fantasy. As a young queer female artist, examining my own existence and the imprints she has made takes place continually throughout her work, as a lingering subconscious echo.

    Though much of Audrey Gillespie’s work is personal, emotional and ties to inner issues, she cannot escape the climate, environment and identity that she exhibits and is influenced by. The decision to open up this extremely personal monologue, now shared with audiences is becoming a strange form of catharsis, creating and displaying outwardly the visual narrative of queer female sadness, mental illness and grievance from Northern Ireland is radical in itself.2

External links & References

  1. “About”Audrey Gillespie
  2. “This Hurts” Audrey Gillespie