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2018 06 November/December

November/December Issue – Out Now!

The final issue of 2018 is loosely themed around several prominent anniversaries being celebrated this year, offering a retrospective glance at the evolution of various Irish arts organisations. Given the upcoming 40th anniversary of Visual Artists Ireland in 2020, we are currently working on the SSI/VAN archive (which extends back to 1980), with a view to mobilising some of this archival material during VAI’s anniversary year. This issue inclues an edited version of an important panel discussion, organised as part of a year-long programme to mark the fortieth anniversary of the Douglas Hyde Gallery. In other organisation profiles, Declan Long reflects on 30 years of the Kerlin Gallery, while Pádraic

A Celebration

INVITED ARTISTS AND THINKERS DISCUSS THE HISTORY OF THE DOUGLAS HYDE GALLERY ON ITS 40TH ANNIVERSARY. This is an abridged version of a public conversation that took place on 17 May at The Douglas Hyde Gallery, as part of a year-long programme marking the gallery’s fortieth anniversary. The panel, chaired by Caoimhín Mac Giolla Léith and introduced by current DHg director Georgina Jackson, comprised artists who have previously had major solo exhibitions at the DHg. Each artist took the opportunity to reflect on the significant influence the DHg has had on their relationship with contemporary art. Georgina Jackson: The Douglas Hyde Gallery holds an incredibly important space in Dublin, in

A Cherished Place

DECLAN LONG PRESENTS AN OVERVIEW OF THE KERLIN GALLERY’S 30-YEAR HISTORY. “Places you can go for free, run by strange people with visions who want to help artists by showing and selling their work”: this was Jerry Saltz, the New York art world’s notorious, necessary gadfly, writing in praise of Chelsea galleries right after Hurricane Sandy had flooded basements, damaged exhibition spaces and indiscriminately destroyed countless works of art. Galleries come and go; we might love them or loathe them; but in that moment of devastation, Saltz felt a need to make a stirring case for their defence: fundamentally, he said, “I love them. All. More than ever.” Free places,

University of Atypical

JANE MORROW REFLECTS 25-YEARS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF ATYPICAL, BELFAST. Most organisations would throw a big, indulgent party for their 25th birthday. It’s not that the former Arts & Disability Forum don’t love a party – they do – but they elected instead to mark this key anniversary by asking difficult questions of their staff, board, members and stakeholders: “Who are we? What contribution do we make? Why are we here and how can we continue to make the best work possible happen here?” As a result, they took the bold move of rebranding. They’d known for a while that the organisation’s name made it sound more like a “therapeutic

By Design

PÁDRAIC E. MOORE INTERVIEWS OONAGH YOUNG ABOUT THE TEN-YEAR EVOLUTION OF HER DUBLIN GALLERY. Pádraic E. Moore: We first met in 2006, at which point you already had an established design practice. Can you can give some insights into what made you want to open a gallery? Oonagh Young: I’d always been drawn to visual art and studied visual communication before setting up a graphic design studio. I had to consider expanding during the ‘boom’, but realised I would become a manager, which made me question the direction I was taking. Working as a designer with several arts organisations at the time, gave me insights into how these organisations operated

The Long Note

SARA GREAVU INTERVIEWS HELEN CAMMOCK ABOUT HER NEW FILM COMMISSION FOR VOID GALLERY, DERRY. This year marks the 50th anniversary of a key civil rights march in Derry that took place on 5 October 1968, calling for the right to vote and an end to gerrymandering and discrimination in housing. This march, and its suppression by the state, is often cited as the galvanising moment of the civil rights movement, and as the starting point of the political conflict that dominated the next 30 years. In the days and weeks before the 50th anniversary, a range of events were organised by a wide spectrum of political groups and by a

‘Lavish and Judicious’

CCA Derry~Londonderry 11 August – 12 October 2018 ‘Lavish and Judicious’ is a multivalent and complex exhibition, presented across the three gallery spaces at CCA and featuring work by four female artists: Aideen Doran, Jaana Kokko, Jennifer Trouton and Caroline Achaintre. There are essentially six artworks in the exhibition, including a single-channel film installation and sound installation. According to the exhibition statement, these works speak to “the overlaps between the historical, the ethnological, landscape and colonialism” and how these forces can be “mapped to contemporary systems of production”. The exhibition’s starting point is Sion Mills, a model village and linen mill in County Tyrone, established by the Herdman family in

Phil Collins ‘This Is The Day’

The MAC, Belfast 10 August – 21 October 2018 So often, when artists reach a certain level of recognition, when the money rolls in and they are showered with very large budgets to play with, their integrity melts into air. They find themselves driven by the market, their hard-fought methods and concepts diluted by the establishment that supports them. Happily, Phil Collins is a rare exception to this rule and this show at the MAC provides evidence of his continued growth over the years. The centrepiece of ‘This is the Day’ is the hour-long film, Ceremony (2017), commemorating the Russian Revolution. It tells the story of Collins’ relocation of a

Seamus Harahan & Thomas McCarthy ‘my comfort and my joy: Songs from the Irish Other’

Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin 19 September – 17 November 2018 Shot on a Hi8 video camera in Seamus Harahan’s familiar, bare-bones style, the film at the heart of this exhibition is presented as an episodic, fragmented documentary, displayed across an array of antique monitors and makeshift screens. With a miscellany of other objects scattered around the gallery space – an old paperback of Knut Hamsun’s Hunger, an enamelled teapot, a Sleaford Mods record – the ramshackle installation feels a little like a car-boot sale. Fancier notes are provided by a copy of a famous tapestry, which functions as a kind of backdrop and a single Eames aluminium chair.1 Less fancy

Theresa Nanigian ‘Just a bit extraordinary’

Highlanes Gallery, Drogheda 22 September – 3 November 2018 In the Highlanes Gallery, Theresa Nanigian presents a crowd-pleasing show, peppered with many different faces and voices, each expressing individual experience and cumulatively communicating a universal humanity that is a comfort to bask in. ‘Just a bit extraordinary’ is comprised of distinct parts that were previously presented individually in Limerick City Gallery and The LAB, Dublin. Three ‘chapters’ have now coalesced at the Highlanes, encompassing the artist’s exploration of “the expression of identity across the lifespan.” This ‘lifespan’ is predominantly represented through three photographic series: ‘not sorry’ documenting teenager’s unoccupied bedrooms (youth); ‘master of my universe’ featuring vendors on the Venice

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