Protoacademy: 'Alternative Strategies' Cork

November 16–1 December 2011

The Protoacademy 'Alternative Strategies' Cork is an 'umbrella-term' for a continually changing, international organisation that brings a collective of artists and theorists together to form a forum for progressive thought on art, creativity and learning. The Protoacademy takes a more definite shape periodically through a series of events which take place in different cities throughout Europe. This becomes an intense period of production and discussion inspired by its location and intended to act as a catalyst for further future contact and participation.

Protoacademy 'Alternative Strategies' Cork will include an exhibition installation, a public lecture by Charles Esche (Director of Rooseum Center for Contemporary Art, Malmö, Sweden) and a public lecture and forum chaired by Dr. Sheperd Steiner.

List of Events:

Open Public Lecture and Forum - Thursday 15 November
Dr. Shepherd Steiner presents a paper on 'The Old Mole': Photography Neighbouring on Materialism (examining the work of Roy Arden) followed by an open public forum with selected guest panellists. Admission free. 3:00pm Crawford College of Art & Design, Sharman Crawford Street, Cork

Public Lecture - Friday 16 November
A lecture by Charles Esche on 'Alternative Strategies' in association with the 'Critical Voices' programme of the Arts Council of Ireland. Admission free. 6:00pm (sharp)
Crawford Municipal Art Gallery, Emmet Place, Cork

Exhibition - Friday 16 November - Saturday 1 December
'Alternative Identities' at the Crawford Municipal Art Gallery. Open 10am - 5pm. Monday - Saturday. Admission Free.

For further information please contact:
Crawford Municipal Art Gallery
Emmet Place, Cork, Ireland
T: +353 21 4273377
or David O'Brien

Strange Attractor Anthony Kelly, Danny McCarthy, Irene Murphy, Mick O'Shea, David Stalling

1 April – 30 April 2011

A residency developing sound and visual possibilities through live events, collaborative performances and video documentation.

Strange Attractor is a dynamic multi-dimensional series of collaborative ventures between five artists, Anthony Kelly, Danny McCarthy, Irene Murphy, Mick O’Shea and David Stalling and guests exploring sound-based cross-disciplinary relationships to create non-verbal communication.

Strange Attractor, began in November 2010, with a highly successful series of monthly four hour durational sound performances, within the gallery spaces inviting, international guests including David Toop & Mary Nunan, Stephen Vitiello, Alessandro Bosetti and Rhodri Davies. The performances have attracted large audiences who have experienced, with the artists developing relationships between sound, visual art, music and choreography.

This collaboration now takes its form in a month long residency in Crawford Art Gallery where the artists will work in the galleries both as a group and as individuals creating components to form an evolving instrument that the listener/viewer can explore resulting in an experience that offers multiple points of entry for the audience.

The residency is a platform for the exploration of ideas and process with open-ended outcomes thus creating sound and visual possibilities using sound installation, still and moving images, video documentation with ‘informal’ performances and live events in the various spaces of the Crawford Art Gallery.

Dawn Williams

Twentieth of April Sixteen Eighty Nine Eamon O'Kane

29 October 2010 – 22 January 2011

Crawford Art Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Eamon O´Kane entitled "Twentieth of April Sixteen Eighty Nine" featuring the artist´s skill and understanding of a wide range of media including video re-enactments, painting, performative drawings, and sculpture.

Eamon O´Kane´s intriguing installation focuses on a pivotal period in the history of Ireland. The multi-layering of histories is key to O´Kane´s work and espouses the idea of history being a highly contingent construct and thereby critiquing ‘the artifice of representation´. The complexities inherent in the construction of history are teased out to form a subtle interrogation of the belief systems and political mind-sets subsequently formed in contemporary Ireland.

"Twentieth of April Sixteen Eighty Nine" centres around the history of O´Kane´s parents´ house in Co. Donegal, and attempts to address and illustrate the overlapping histories of his family home and the siege of Derry by James II in 1689. Crucial to the history-making is the symbol of a sycamore tree which James II lunched under on ‘Twentieth of April Sixteen Eighty Nine´ which subsequently fell in 1999 during a storm and the residues of history, myth and O´Kane´s own art histories from which is created.

Eamon O´Kane has exhibited widely including solo shows at ArtSway, New Forest, Economist Plaza, London, and Gregory Lind Gallery, San Francisco and Rare Gallery, New York. In 2006 he was short-listed for the AIB Prize and received a Pollock Krasner foundation grant. He was short-listed for the Jerwood Drawing Prize in London in 2007. O´Kane lives and works in Odense, Denmark and Co. Donegal, Ireland.

In my own time Grace Weir

7 April – 30 June 2011

Crawford Art Gallery presents ‘In my own time’ by Grace Weir as part of a series of screenings by Irish and International artists.

“In my own time”, is a short film which explores ideas surrounding event time and our perceptions of place consisting of a series of episodes drawing together perceptions of time from different philosophical, scientific and cultural viewpoints. Episodes revealing how ancient societies regarded time and space in relation to direct experience – encapsulated in the phrase ‘as long as it takes to milk a cow’ – are shown alongside treatments of Einstein’s theories, ideas about civil timekeeping and the possibility of time travel. Influenced by 19thcentury scientific demonstrations, the artist explores these ideas through her own actions
and activities.

However Weir’s work is as much involved with the qualities and structures of film-making as it is with science. The film explores the connection between the concept of one’s self as a being in time and the sense of one’s life as a narrative.

Events in the film are portrayed in a rational style; but oscillate between fact and fiction, between documentary and cinematic illusion.

To launch the screening Grace Weir will give an informal talk on Thursday 7 April, 6:00 pm
(free entrance).

Grace Weir has shown extensively nationally and internationally working mostly in film and video. Recent exhibitions include: Déja Vu, The Dock, Carrick-on-Shannon; The Golden Bough In my own time, Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane; In my own time, The Science Museum, London and represented Ireland at the 49th International Venice Biennale.

The Politics of Memory Shane Cullen

December 2010 – May 2011

“Commemoration, of course, is a selective act. We choose what to commemorate and how to commemorate it. We decide that some events are worth remembering, honour them with exhibitions and pageants, films and novels. Others are quietly forgotten.”

“A Decade of Commemorations Commemorating Our Shared History”
Speech by An Taoiseach, Mr. Brian Cowen T.D. to the Institute for British Irish Studies UCD, 20th May 2010.

Earlier this year Shane Cullen was invited to curate an exhibition in the Gibson Galleries. This initiative of inviting artist/curators to offer an alternative discourse and evaluation of the Crawford’s Collection, is the first of a series of annual curated projects aimed at giving greater access and interpretation to over 2,200 works of art, ranging from the seventeenth century to the contemporary held in the Gallery’s collection. .

My idea and intention for this exhibition was to position two works at it’s core and to have all of the subsequent works radiate outwards in a discursive and speculative manner.
The two works I identified for this purpose were the bust of James Connolly and the collection of skeletal forms by John Hogan which are both sculptural works and which, in a sense, physically occupy territory as opposed to the more metaphorical propositions and speculations proposed by much of the painting and two dimensional works selected.
Both the artists, Seamus Murphy and John Hogan were from Cork and it is the dialogue between the heroic formal representation of Connolly and the sinewy memento mori of
Hogans exquisitely crafted bones that provide the conceptual bedrock on which the myriad of painted images rest.

Clearly rhetorical political works such as “Les Sabines” by Robert Ballagh, “The Revolutionary” by William Orpen, Nigel Rolfe’s “Roses in the Face”, “Woman in Red” by S.J.Lynham and Willie Doherty’s “Evergreen Memories” are counterposed with expressions of studied lessness such as “Matchboxes” by Charles Brady and “Wind” by Donald Teskey and the beautiful enigmatic self portrait of Samuel Forde. Didactic and documentary forms of pictorial representation are unearthed in the works of Muriel Brandt, Dan O Neill and Patrick Pye.

I am struck by the poignancy of images such as the unattributed photographic print “Silver Bells” from the Nottaway Plantation collection, and the desolate lyricism of “The Last Rehearsal” by Colin Harrison which evokes for me the spirit of Alain Resnais’ “Last Year at Marienbad”. Both of the paintings by Patrick Hennessey represent a similar kind
of considered, dispassionate and analytical rationalism in the approach that the painter has adopted, however, there is a fanatical attention to the detail of the pictorial space

“John Joe’s Dream” by D. Spillane, “The Cabinet of Exotica” by Susanna Chan and J.Halpin’s “After Patinir” assail the viewer with a celebratory kaleidoscope of the playful,
the idiosyncratic and the fantastic. Devices and inventions abound in this realm of personal and private languages. Gerard Dillon’s “Stunts” and S. Cooke Collis’ “Still Life
with Mandarin” are further fine examples of this genre the climactic intensity of colour in Elisabeth Magill’s “Blue Constrictor” dramatically demonstrating the power of the
imagination and of painting’s power to successfully transcend its own materiality..

I have included two paintings which it might be assumed were made from observation. “Belgium under Snow” by A. St John Partridge and “The Bedouins” by H.Bishop. The
muted colour range and the restrained, and understated style of these paintings belie the high level of mastery in their execution. There is something about the assuredness and
certainty of these pictures which casts them adrift and leaves them stranded, as the epoch which Connolly and his fellow ideologues and revolutionaries prophesied comes to pass
with all of its attendant catastrophes. Beyond the intimations of mortality inspired by the skeletal forms of John Hogan’s bones, wrought for the purposes of physiological study
and demonstration, the art of James Connolly and his heirs, to conceive of, to advocate and to finally bring about a future which we have still failed to grasp, can be dimly
perceived through the heavy shrouding of the atrophied political institutions that rule our daily lives. Are the great exponents of internationalist conceptualism Christo and
Jean Claude providing us with a meditation on this concept or are they proposing that we might tread a path of renewal?
Spanning the centuries, it is this sense of immanence and expectation that is invoked by so many of the works in this great collection. At one moment we find it in the haunted
gaze of Samuel Forde, pale and youthful witness to the fall of angels, and at another in the righteous defiance carved onto the face of doomed revolutionary James Connolly.

Inevitably through the experience of observing and contemplating the assembled works, both the multiciplicity of meanings, differences and relationships, that we are reminded of our common humanity. It is great art that positions us there, standing on the threshold, at the moment of history

Artists Acknowledgements.
I would like to thank Director Peter Murray for his invitation to undertake the task of making a selection of works from the permanent collection of the Crawford Gallery. A particular thanks to Exhibitions Curator, Dawn Williams for taking the project in hand and bringing it to a successful conclusion. I would also like to thank Colleen O’Sullivan,former keeper of the Permanent Collection for her kind and patient assistance during the period while I conducted my research and answered all of my endless questions.

There is so much work that goes on behind the scenes when mounting an exhibition like this so I would also like to sincerely thank the technical team who entered into the spirit of this endeavour and made “The Politics of Memory”

All My Lovin' Doug Dubois, Jenny Matthews, Lydia Panas, Phillip Toledano, Amelia Stein, Carolle Benitah, Muireann Brady, Alex Ten Napel, Igor Savchenko, Elinor Carucci, Lucia Stráňaiová, Chris Hurley, Edith Maybin, Rebecca Martinez, Anna Shteynshleyger, Sandra Minchin, Verena Jaekel

3 February – 19 March 2011

A collection of imagery focusing on love, family, relationships through photography, video and sound installations.

Travelling from romantic and sexual love through to
lifelong relationships within families, to faded and remembered love, All My Lovin’ explores a vast dialogue through the collective voices of these international artists.
The exhibition is curated by Peggy Sue Amison – Sirius Arts Centre’s Artistic Director, Krzysztof Candrowicz – Director of Fotofestiwal, Łódź and Łódź Arts Centre, Poland and Christoph Tannert – Director of Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin Germany, for the 9th Annual Łódź International Festival of Photography.

Black Tears Cecily Brennan

3 April – 28 April 2011

Crawford Art Gallery presents ‘Black Tears´ by Cecily Brennan as part of a series of screenings by Irish and International artists.

‘Black Tears' (2010) observes Irish actress Britta Smith immersed in unexplained grief. Her sadness is accentuated during the course of the video when she appears to be weeping black tears. While our instinct might be to politely avert our gaze from a woman in distress, Cecily Brennan´s powerful and evocative ‘Black Tears´ asks us to confront and question personal affliction. The work conjures up a maelstrom of questions directed both to the weeping woman and within oneself addressing, at least, vulnerability and strength.

From a basis in painting and drawing Brennan´s practice has expanded to encompass video, sculpture and installation addressing two related but distinct subjects, that of physical pain and affliction, on the one hand, and that of psychological trauma, on the other. Damage and fortitude are her abiding concerns, and the perennial search for those strategies of survival that allow ordinary human beings to endure and overcome the various afflictions by which they are beset.*

To launch the screening Cecily Brennan will give an informal presentation on Thursday 13 January, 5:30 pm (free entrance). Cecily Brennan lives and works in Dublin and Berlin and has shown extensively in Ireland and internationally including ‘Transmediale´ MMX Berlin, (2011); ‘Love Video´ Oriel Mostyn Gallery, Llandudno (2011); ‘Dark Waters´ Station Project Platform Arts, Belfast (2011); ‘Collecting the New´ Irish Museum of Modern Art
(2010); ‘Unbuilding´ Mermaid Arts Centre. ‘Black Tears´ Taylor Galleries, Dublin (2010); ‘Voices´ commissioned by Breaking Ground, Ballymun (2009); Ard Bia, Berlin, ‘Singing the Real´ Iziko South African National Gallery, Capetown (2007) and ‘Balancing´ Ormeau Baths Gallery, Belfast (2005). Cecily Brennan is represented by Taylor Galleries, Dublin.

For further information please contact:
Crawford Art Gallery, Emmet Place, Cork, Ireland

*Aidan Dunne, Irish Times, May 5, 2010

Tarzan/Standing Leg Johan Lorbeer

Thursday 14 July, 1 – 3 pm
Friday 15 July, 11 am – 1 pm
Saturday 16 July, 11 am – 1 pm

The performance artist Johan Lorbeer will be amazing shoppers on Opera Lane on the same day of the opening of Gravity. Appearing to float in mid-air, above the heads of the passers-by below he will remain aloft for several hours.

Lobeer’s extraordinary elevated performances have taken place in art galleries and cities throughout Europe.

sponsored by the Goethe Institute

New Large Scale Works Charles Tyrrell

Thursday 13 May – 2 July

Crawford Art Gallery is pleased to present 'New Large Scale Works' by Charles Tyrrell, in partnership with Solstice Arts Centre

Having spent his formative years in Meath, Charles Tyrrell has lived and worked in the Beara Peninsula for nearly twenty years and this new body of work celebrates the artist's strong connections with Meath and Cork.

Patrick Murphy has commented that for nearly 30 years now, critics have from time to time sought, without success, to root Tyrrell's abstraction into his West Cork landscape. At times, Tyrrell seems to admit some oblique reference but then squeezes out any iota of that possibility. If this present suite of paintings has any such reference it is not to the topographical but the tectonic [1].

Tyrrell's abstract canvases juxtapose meditative qualities alongside a darker underbelly in which the layers of paint, often scraped back and reapplied, invites yet rebuffs, the viewer from gaining evidence of what lies beneath. Each work that Tyrrell creates organically from his previous canvas engenders a narrative or conversation between the compositions. Shown together at the Crawford Art Gallery, they illustrate the fact that his paintings have got ever more simple and rigorous, and within this defined arena his painting has got more complex and capable of embracing fact and metaphor with equal passion[2].

A full-colour catalogue with text by Patrick T. Murphy, Director, RHA Gallery, Dublin accompanies the exhibition (€8).
[1] Patrick T. Murphy, New Works by Charles Tyrrell, Solstice Arts Centre and Crawford Art Gallery, 2011

[2] Ibid.

In Search of the Miraculous: ten days of film, video and photography

17–28 October 2011

enue: former Beamish and Crawford brewery

Mon17 Dorothy Cross Stalactite
Wed 19 Rirkrit Tiravanija Lung Neaw
Thu 20 Rirkrit Tiravanija Lung Neaw
Fri 21 Keren Cytter Video Art Manual
Sat 22 Anri Sala Answer Me
Mon 24 Anri Sala Answer Me
Tue 25 Anri Sala Answer Me
Wed 26 Clare Langan State of Suspension
Thu 27 Ryan Trecartin (Tommy Chat Just E-mailed Me)
Fri 28 Ryan Trecartin (Tommy Chat Just E-mailed Me)

A miracle is the manifestation in this world
of the laws of another — PD Ouspensky

In Search of the Miraculous:
ten days of film, video and photography

The exhibition takes its title from an unfinished multi-part project by iconic Dutch-born conceptual artist Bas Jan Ader. In Search of the Miraculous, the artist’s last piece of work, was intended as a three-part performance. It began with a lonely night-time walk from the hills of Los Angeles down to the sea documented in photographs (One Night in Los Angeles, 1973) and led to the second part In Search of the Miraculous (Songs of the North Atlantic), an attempted west-east crossing of the Atlantic in July 1975 in a small four-metre cruiser from which he never returned. Six months after Ader’s departure, his boat was found half-submerged off the coast of Ireland.

In Search of the Miraculous: ten days of film, video and photography showcases recent work by Irish and international artists involved with the moving image and photography alongside a key film work from Bas Jan Ader’s 1971 Fall series, Broken Fall (Geometric). In doing so, it sets up a dialogue around what has been a central theme of Ader’s life and work: “[framing] a key motif from the culture of Romanticism, that of the wandering tragic hero on a quest for the sublime”.1

Nowhere, perhaps, does Ader more vividly portray that theme and the inherent tension it carries than in the piece presented here, which shows the artist experiencing the act of falling in a part-tragic part-slapstick mode. Indeed, Broken Fall (Geometric) brings to life two crucial aspects of the sublime: the particular ‘limit’ or threshold experience where one teeters on the edge, the self both revealed and dissolved in a state of heightened awareness, as well as – and this is intrinsic to Bas Jan Ader’s project – the fragility of this state and ultimately the possibility of failure.

The works presented in this exhibition all share Ader’s physical and emotional exploration of these glimpses of the miraculous within our world — when the miraculous irrupts into the everyday and when everything comes together momentarily, producing an excess of meaning. All the artists surrender to these interpretations of the miraculous, and crucially they evoke a shared sensibility of the emotions and events which are part of everyday life but which are also extraordinary and universal. Seen in this light, the artists in this exhibition ‘could be said to be translating and transforming […] emotion […] into an aesthetic form, a cultural concept and finally, an idea.’2

In different ways, they all peek into these moments where space and time seem as though suspended, in the powerful and poetic works of artists such as Dorothy Cross and Clare Langan. Where time is slowed down to the point of meditation in Rirkrit Tiravanija’s eight hour-long video work Lung Neaw, or near slow motion in Ader’s film work. Or conversely, where it frenetically speeds up, with visual overload in the works of Ryan Trecartin and Keren Cytter altering our senses and perception. As such, they all share in Ader’s personal and artistic quest for the sublime.

1. Jan Verwoert, Bas Jan Ader: In Search of the Miraculous, London: Afterall, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, 2006, p 3
2. Ibid, p 19

Press information and images
Victoria EvansT: +353 (0) 21 4907853


15 July – 29 October 2011

The labour of rising from the ground, said the artist, will be great, as we see it in the heavier domestic fowls; but, as we mount higher, the earth´s attraction, and the body´s gravity, will be gradually diminished, ´til we shall arrive at a region where the man will float in the air without any tendency to fall: no care will then be necessary, but to move forwards, which the gentlest impulse will effect.
—Samuel Johnson, 1759, The History of Rasselas

The idea of gravity as both an actual physical force, and also a metaphor for living, is pervasive. People often refer to the ‘gravity´ of a situation, while the term gravitas is used to describe a somewhat ponderous dignity. However, the way in which artists, both historic and contemporary, work with this physical reality reveals much about how the world is viewed, experienced and interpreted.

The exhibition presents over 50 works by 29 celebrated artists from Marina Abramović and Ulay´s 16mm film Rest Energy (1980); abundant with relational gravity, to Dorothy Cross´s sculptural work Whale (2011) that physically embraces the materiality and suspension of gravity.

Spanning several mediums of painting, drawing, photography, film, print and performance, this show provides a fertile area within which practitioners explore aspects of gravity.

In Antipodes I/II, directed by choreographer William Forsythe, the dancer is shown floating, moving between two tables. While in Li Wei´s photographs, such as Love at the High Place (2004) [below], the artist creates situations which are like frozen moments of extreme choreography.

The recording of performance art, and these records becoming art in their own right, goes back to works such as Failing to Levitate in the Studio (1966) where Bruce Nauman attempted to hover above his studio floor. This exhibition is an intricate and multidisciplinary exploration of the many interpretations of gravity, from science to spirituality, all of which disturb our senses.

guided tours
every Saturday
1.15 – 2.15 pm and 3.15 – 4.15 pm
admission free, all welcome
for more information contact Anne or Emma
T +353 [0]21 490 7857
T +353 [0]21 490 7862

Stalactite Dorothy Cross

Heineken Ireland, former Beamish & Crawford Brewery
16 – 22 July,
from dusk ´til dark 6 – 9 pm

A unique off-site video installation of Stalactite (2010) by Dorothy Cross [above] at the old Malt Grain Store on the historic site of the former Beamish and Crawford Brewery, South Main Street, Cork.

Stalactite is a video of the Great Stalactite of Doolin Cave, County Clare, which has grown over the course of a million years in its black chamber. Here, a boy soprano stands beneath the spectral object, singing nonverbal sounds in a curious juxtaposition of the paces of human and geological time.

curated by Rachael Thomas, Head of Exhibitions, IMMA (Seconded).

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