Cian McLoughlin is one of Ireland's foremost figurative painters. Not only does he use paint to capture a likeness but he also marshals its tactile, malleable properties to convey the turmoil, the joys - the cumulative impact of a life lived. Writing in the cover story of the autumn 2014 issue of 'The Irish Arts Review', Brendan Rooney said of the artist that he is "invigorated by the uncertainty inherent in the creative process. Working without any prescribed vision, he embraces the challenges and impediments he encounters in his work and favours a method of engagement, detachment and re-engagement in the realization of his compositions."

Born in 1977, McLoughlin is an architecture graduate who went on to take a masters in film studies in UCD. Although reluctant to talk about his own work, McLoughlin does tell of the effect a study trip to Florence has had on it. It was there, as a 16 year old, he first saw the slave sculptures of Michelangelo and Donatello's Mary Magdalene that would have a profound and lasting influence on his painting. He also finds particular inspiration in the self-portraits of Rembrandt, Whistler's nocturnes and the late work of Titian.