Dublin-born Terry Corcoran attended the
he won awards in drawing at the Royal Dublin Society
student show, and a Browne Thomas prize for stained
glass. After college he worked for the well-known
Murphy Devitt stained glass studio, designing
windows for churches and private homes.
In 1969 he traveled to the U.S. and settled in
California. There he continued in stained glass work as well as painting. He also began
sculpting in wood, creating a series of sculptures called River Sticks. Made from flat
boards, the artist describes them as “a waterfall from heaven to earth.”
Terry returned to live in Ireland in 1991, making his home in Co. Wicklow.
During the 1990s he continued sculpting in wood, creating a series of sculptures he refers
to as “the Heart of the Matter.” He also developed a pigment made from the ash of turf, a
traditional source of fuel in
into a large series of paintings based on the bog lands, and the ancient preserved human
remains that have been unearthed from them. With these paintings Terry mounted a very
successful exhibition—“Excavations and Exchanges”—with his artist brother, Austin
Corcoran, at Webster University, St. Louis, in 1994, which was supported by the Irish
Department of Foreign Affairs.
While living in Ireland, Terry exhibited regularly there, and completed a number
of stained glass commissions. His paintings reflect his ever-present, but lately growing
interest in the spirituality of creativity. A highly successful exhibition in 2001 at the
Courthouse Arts Centre in Co. Wicklow was titled “Axis Mundi” for the mystical notion
of the unity of above and below, heaven and earth, soul and body. Paintings made in
2005 and 2006 (“Windows” and “Simple Symbols”) were more directly symbolic rather
than imagistic or expressionistic, and explored the potential of the paintings and the
symbols they represent as objects of meditation, pathways to the divine.
In 2007 Terry moved back to the US. That year he made a series of paintings
called “The Sète Set” which was inspired by a visit to Sète on the French Mediterranean
coast, home of Paul Valéry. The twelve paintings are each titled with a line from Valéry’s
poem “The Graveyard by the Sea” and were exhibited at the Sutton Loop Gallery in St. Louis.
‘Horizons’ was shown at the Courthouse Arts Centre in Tinahely, Co. Wicklow,
Ireland, in 2009. The ‘Formless Form’ paintings were exhibited at the Yoga Gallery
on Lafayette Square in St. Louis in 2010. Tavern of Fine Arts in St. Louis was the
venue for the ‘Lacuna’ exhibition in 2012, and ‘Water-Fall’, a series of paintings and
poems (with Terry’s wife Sharon), in 2014.
‘Water-Fall’ and a new series of watercolors called ‘Seasons’, will travel to Ireland in
2016 for the 20th anniversary exhibition series at the Courthouse Arts Centre in Tinahely.
Also this year, Terry was commissioned to make a painting, titled ‘The Jewel in the Crown’,
for the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Washington University in
St. Louis, which has collected a number of his works.
Terry moved to Colorado in July 2016.