What's on

Dominic McKeown
14/04/22 – 20/05/22


The University of Atypical is delighted to invite you to join us for the launch of SWADDLE, a thought provoking new exhibition by Dominic McKeown. Dominic received the University of Atypical’s Graduate Award in 2020 receiving mentoring from artists Maud Cotter and Dr Colin Darke in the preparation for his first solo exhibition.

McKeown’s work stems from years of exploration into the relationship between the body, materials and structures that envelop us. SWADDLE explores our physical contact and psychological relationship with materials from our past and present experiences, our public and private spaces.

SWADDLE invites us to consider the material value of not only the architectural space of the gallery, but relationship between the viewer and the sculptural work within it. Devised to activate a self-awareness of our own presence within space and the intimacy of scale.

When we’re born, we are swaddled in cotton wool; protected from the beginning. The combination of concrete paired with woollen textiles creates tension between the materials and what we expect or understand their function to be. This contrast encourages the viewer to reflect on personal security, confront self-awareness and the conditioning of identity. Using found textile materials, the sculptures aim to embody our knowledge of architectural spaces incorporating items associated with protection, feeling safe or sheltered and personal identity expressed through dress.

We understand concrete as a vigorous material, by wrapping it in wool its hard exterior is cushioned protecting its exposed and vulnerable surface. A mask can provide confidence, security and soften external strains.


Dominic McKeown (b.1995, Belfast) studied Textile Design, Art and Fashion at Ulster University graduating in 2014. He
has based his research and practice within his hometown of Belfast, completing a Masters in
Fine Art at Ulster University in 2020. He is a member of Flax Art Studios and is an active worker within the art community within Belfast. He is a Co-Director of Catalyst Arts alongside working as freelance art technician.
For more information – d.mck.art (instagram)

Open: Tuesday-Friday 11am-5pm
Address: 109 – 113 Royal Avenue, Belfast BT1 1FF
T: 028 90239450
W: universityofatypical.org

Covid Safety:
Sanitiser units at the entrance and around the venue
Anyone who can, should wear a face covering when visiting the venue
We request that people practice social distancing inside of the space
We will be regularly sanitising all surfaces within the venue
We will no longer permit the audience/visitors to gather inside of the office space to protect staff

What's On

Accessing Architecture Exhibition

ISL Promotional video BSL Promotional video The Exhibition runs until Friday 27 January 2022 at the University of Atypical Gallery at 109-113 Royal Avenue, Belfast. Below is a virtual tour of the exhibition: ISL Tour BSL Tour  

Image ID: Painting on ceramic by Dara Condon as part of the Strangely Disjointed & Idiosyncratic exhibition. The painting is of a goddess in the style of an Ancient Greek bust. The goddess is wearing a face covering. The background is done in shades of blue and white. The goddess is mostly blue except for the eyes which are white. The goddess is outlined in black and there are also shades of brown in places around the neck and face.

strangely disjointed & idiosyncratic

Dara Condon was the recipient of the University of Atypical’s Graduate Award 2019 and we’re pleased to see this promising graduate’s exhibition realised. Dara’s inspiration derives from eclectic pools of thought drawing on scientific theories, sacred symbols and forms, mythology and the power of the natural world. This is Dara’s

Image ID: A feminine figure sits on the ground in the bottom left of the photograph. They have long reddish/brown hair, wearing a white t-shirt and teal coloured trousers. They are looking through a camera on a tripod, beside them is a wheelchair. Six people are standing in a semi circle in the background and there are other people to the left and right of the photo.

Fittings & MisFittings

The DisOrdinary Architecture Project was established in 2008. Since then a network of disabled artists have collaborated with architecture, interiors and built environment students, educators, researchers, practitioners and other interested groups to co-create new and exciting ways to do disability differently in the design of built space. Fittings and MisFittings

‘Where Do We Live’ Drawing Workshop

With James Ashe Free James Ashe invites you to take part in a series of artist-led workshops that will be an expansion of his ‘Where Do We Live’ map project exploring the hidden statues and sculptures in Belfast City. The workshops will begin with exploring the Strand Arts Centre and

Jacqueline Wylie – “Life Goes On”

Jacqueline Wylie began to document the impact of Covid-19 on herself and the spirit of her local community of Ballymacarrett in May 2020. Most of the photographs were taken while she walked the Greenway in East Belfast, litter picking and engaging with people, before she was furloughed from her role

Disability, Covid-19, & the ‘Second Shift’

The second shift refers to Arlie Hochschild’s 1989 book, which describes the labour performed at home in addition to the paid work performed in the formal sector. It is comparable to the extra hidden labour of people with disabilities, the necessary and reasonable adjustments they and their families need to

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