Lily Murray O’Shea

Visual Artist

Cork, Ireland

Lily Murray O’Shea is a visual artist based in Ireland concerned with political questions surrounding the contemporary labourer. This practice involves sculpture, performance, and film, as well as different forms of writing and publishing in varied contexts.


‘Laggard’, a text featured on The Paper website – The Paper, 2021.


‘Collaborative Survival in Precarious Times’, a text featured in Hypertext (Issue 06) – Bloomers Magazine, 2020.

a passive house – collaborative project with Glasgow and Cork-based curator Alison O’Shea.

Rhetoric – Crawford College of Art and Design, Cork, Ireland – online degree showcase.


Villa the End – Pillkaller Alee 2, Charlottenburg, Berlin Gallery Weekend, Germany – selected group exhibition.

Art(ist) Film – The Gate Cinema, Indie Film Festival, Cork, Ireland – selected group exhibition.

My research employs labour as the artistic methodology in order to approach political questions concerning the contemporary worker. Labour here is examined in close proximity with free-market capitalism which is an economic and political system based on the private ownership of the means of production. My work is primarily concerned with the terms ‘immaterial labour’ and ‘precarity’ in regard to changes taking place in workers’ labour processes. Immaterial labour is an autonomous Marxist framework which describes how value is produced from creative work which creates such immaterial goods as services, cultural products, communication, and knowledge. In relation to work, the term ‘precarity’ is situated within the context of immaterial labour as it refers to an insecure form of living in which flexible, contingent, and temporary employment is prevalent. My work focuses on specific forms of this labour by foregrounding managerial practice and project work throughout my research. Through the use of assemblage and appropriation, my work utilizes performance, sculpture, and text to expand on the materiality of precarity while foregrounding various anxieties endured by the modern-day worker.

Through academic and material research, my work aims to engage with critical discourses surrounding contemporary forms of labour, theory and culture.

Email: lily.oshea.art@gmail.com