Had a quiet morning/afternoon/day in work so just started reading newsletters and looking at various art and culture type things that are coming up over the next while, and it appears that there’s lots and lots of exciting things coming up!
There are some new shows opening in the Galway Arts Centre, launching tomorrow at 6pm. The first show is the intriguingly titled ‘Post-Fordlandia’ by Megs Morley and Tom Flanagan which is described as a "filmic exploration of the mythologies surrounding Fordlandia, Henry Ford’s empty ghost town in the Brazilian rainforest.” Intriguing! I did a little research (i.e. looked it up on Wikipedia) and found that Fordlândia or "Ford-land" is a patch of land of about 10,000 km² in the Amazon Rainforest, that Henry Ford came upon in 1928 and used as a source of cultivated rubber to be used for the Ford Motor Company, creating an industrial town, which is now abandoned.
The second show is called ‘The Peoples’ History of Galway’ and the Galway Arts Centre is showing an exhibition featuring new work by Ceara Conway, Roisin Coyle and Simon Fleming, as part of month of events in various venues in Galway. I certainly think Ceara Conway’s work is worth a look - I have yet to check out Coyle and Fleming’s work but living on the same street as the Arts Centre, I have no excuse for not dropping in for a gawk!
Further afield, the 2011 PhotoIreland festival has been announced. Lots of interesting exhibitions and talks, and the workshops teaching wet collodion photography and other fancy 19th century techniques certainly caught my eye. Unfortunately, they’re a bit on the expensive side at about €500 each so sadly, attending out of mere curiosity will not be happening. There is an intimidating number of exhibitions being shown - some that stand out are 'The Shadow of James Joyce' by Motoko Fujita - an homage to Finnegan's Wake, and 'The Arc of Realism 1911-1997' - a collection of work by Zofia Rydet, documenting her creative journey from realism to surrealism and back to realism by the end of her career. I always find it interesting to see how an artist's output changes over the years, and adapts to different movements, and the choices they make when developing their work. Rydet had to make a choice between documenting the world around her in an accurate way or creating her own poetic vision, and I'd certainly be interested to see the contrast and battle between the two.
The exhibition 'The Art Books of Henri Matisse' has opened at the Chester Beatty Library and runs until September 25. I’ve never been to an exhibition in the Chester Beatty before but it looks like this exhibition might be worth a look. The Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera exhibition runs in IMMA until June 26th so might be an idea to try and catch both, if you feel so inclined. The exhibition sounds amazing, and Kahlo’s work is outstanding when you see it in person, a must see Apparently there’s been massive queues to go see it so maybe pick a time when it’s not likely to be so busy.
Still in Dublin, there will be a public reading and interview with the author Edmund de Waal at City Hall, Dublin next Wednesday 8 June 2011, at 6:30pm. De Waal is the author of the book ‘The Hare With Amber Eyes.’ His reading from the book will be followed by an interview chaired by Eileen Battersby, literary correspondent for The Irish Times. The event begins with a wine reception at 6.30pm and forms part of the celebrations for Year of Craft 2011. Tickets are €10.
As a crafts fan, I checked out the Year of Craft 2011 website and found all sorts of interesting things, some really original little events like this "Breakfast At Tiffany’s - Special Screening & Craft Maker Talk" event - a private tour of the exhibition Ornament followed by 'Elevenses' and a special screening of Breakfast at Tiffany's, and then a discussion with two of Ireland's finest jewellers about their style icons and inspiration, and what makes a piece timeless, in their opinion. All for the bargain price of €10! Amazing. I love the originality of the event - it seems a little frivolous and vacant, but fun nevertheless!
I’m seriously considering taking part in this Beginners Creative Textile Course - a workshop in which participants experiment in making sample textiles that can then be used for brooch and card making, and the like. It takes place out in Spiddal and costs €50 or €40 if you’re unemployed. It takes place on June 19, and again on July 17.
The Cork Midsummer Festival (11-26 June) has a really interesting and diverse programme. Ukuleles, tea dances, acrobatics, porn addiction, pop up homes…it has it all! The 'electro-opera' Tomorrow, In A Year in particular sounds interesting for fans of The Knife and might just be worth a wander down to Cork.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, tickets go on sale tomorrow for the Galway Arts Festival…the highlight of which is pretty darn fantastic – Cillian Murphy starring in the world premiere of Enda Walsh’s ‘Misterman’. This promises to be very exciting (if it equals Walsh’s awesome play ‘Penelope’ from last year’s GAF, it’ll be doing well) and is a must see. As someone who is gutted they never got to see Murphy in ‘Disco Pigs’ (the play version, I mean – I’ve devoured the film many, many times), I’m very excited to finally witness a Walsh-Murphy collaboration!
It's going to be a busy summer!!