Martin Shaw: Imaginalia

20 - 24 February

ONCA is delighted to host Martin Shaw’s first solo exhibition in ten years: Imaginalia.

In summer 2018, Martin Shaw found himself painting. For three months, all day every day he would walk out to his studio and begin. It wasn’t exactly planned, it was something that happened. Imaginalia is an exhibition that brings together much of the work created over that time. From graphite drawings to large oil paintings we witness someone working at the edge of their imagination, towards what Henry Corbin called the Mundus Imaginalis, an imagination that is more than human. Emerging from the work is fragments of old Greek and Celtic myths, all tied up with motifs and snatches of words from Shaw’s wider life and life as a mythologist.

As part of the show, we will be celebrating the release of Shaw’s highly anticipated new book, The Night Wages, a work intimately connected to the paintings.


Exhibition launch event: Wednesday 20 February, 6 – 8pm
Book launch: Friday 22 February, 6:30 – 8:30pm £8, tickets here


Dr Martin Shaw is an artist, author and teacher. He is a painting scholar from the British School in Rome and has exhibited in the UK, Europe and United States.

Author of the award winning Mythteller trilogy (A Branch From The Lightning Tree, Snowy Tower, Scatterlings), he founded the Oral Tradition and Mythic Life courses at Stanford University, whilst being director of the Westcountry School of Myth in the UK. He has introduced thousands of people to mythology and how it penetrates modern life. For twenty years Shaw has been a wilderness rites of passage guide, working with at-risk youth, the sick, returning veterans and many women and men seeking a deeper life.

His translations of Gaelic poetry and folklore (with Tony Hoagland) have been published in Orion MagazinePoetry InternationalKenyon ReviewPoetry Magazine and the Mississippi Review. Fresh for 2019 will be his new book, The Night Wages, and his Lorca translations, Courting the Dawn (with Stephan Harding). His essay and conversation with Ai Weiwei on myth and migration will be published by the Marciano Arts foundation in early 2019.