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Guggi's first passion since childhood has been painting. He was a founding member of the cult band Virgin Prunes, notorious for their performative spectaculars on the European underground, where his main contribution was a visual one. He continued to paint throughout his years in the band, and parted company with them in 1984 to dedicate himself solely to painting, and later sculpture, which he first exhibited in the Shafrazi Gallery in New York in 2001.
Since the early 1990’s Guggi’s work has continued to explore the depiction of common everyday objects. With a focus on repetition and abstraction, Guggi’s signature motifs of bowls and other vessels are transformed and freed of their context often articulated with a deceptive simplicity that heightens their stillness and meditative presence.
Guggi has exhibited widely since the 1990’s. Most recently he has had solo exhibitions in Château la Coste, Le Puy-Sainte-Reparade (2018), the Yoshii Gallery, Paris (2017) and New York (2016); Kerlin Gallery, Dublin (2013, 2009, 1993, 1990); Accademia Fine Art, Monaco (2012); BePalermitano, Buenos Aires (2012); Freies Museum, Berlin (2011); John Rocha, London (2010); Yoshii Gallery, New York, (2010); Solomon Gallery, Dublin (2005, 2002, 2000); Osborne Samuel Gallery, London (2004) and Tony Shafrazi Gallery, New York (2001).
Select group shows are National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin (2008); Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin (2004); Cape Town, South Africa (2004) and the National Municipal Gallery, Iceland (1995).
Guggi’s work is held in the public collections of the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Château La Coste, Le Puy Sainte Réparade, France and Akureyi Municipal Art Gallery, Iceland and collected by both private and corporate collections in Ireland and abroad.
Kelly Grovier, historian and art critic, writes of Guggi’s work: “Objects from another world that don't sit so much as shudder, as if lit from an energy deep inside that confounds their substance. Excavations of dissolving form - half-remembered and half-erased - at once poignant and philosophical.”