As part of the Bealtaine Festival, West Cork Arts Centre will screen The Last Statue Maker in Cork. This short film tells of one man’s life and work. Maurice O’Donnell’s lifelong fascination with statues, grew from modelling figures from turf as a small child, to an apprenticeship at Bernardi’s Statue Shop in Cork, to time spent in Italy studying with the great masters. His work has been exhibited all over the world and he continued to make statues right up to his eighties. The documentary also tells the stories of some of the statues themselves, including the famous ‘moving’ statue of Ballinspittle, which was one of Maurice’s creations.
The Last Statue Maker in Cork was produced by Frameworks Films in collaboration with the Cork Mason’s Union for Cork Community Television. It was funded under the Sound & Vision scheme, an initiative of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland. 19 minutes.
As part of the Irish Film Institute’s National Touring Programme, West Cork Arts Centre will also screen a selection of short films from Euro-paeans –celebrating Ireland and Europe in film. In celebration of Ireland’s Presidency of the EU (January to June 2013) this programme of short films explores impressions of Ireland and Europe in collections at the IFI Irish Film Archive.
The first films made in Ireland (and indeed the first films made in many other European countries) were produced by agents of the pioneering French company Les Frères Lumière. This selection of actualities, each about 50 seconds long, shows life on the streets of Dublin – O’Connell Street (then Sackville Street) and Grafton Street. 3 minutes.
Ireland’s fascination with Europe is seen here in this compilation of newsreel stories directed by Colm Ó Laoghaire and produced by Gael Linn for cinema exhibition in the early 1960s. Stories include a Dublin exhibition of photographs of the Berlin Wall (1962); First Aer Lingus Winter Sunshine Flight to Malaga (1963); an exchange of French and Irish school students (1962); and a Scandinavian ceremony of light (1963). 6 minutes.
A whirlwind tour of Ireland in the 1960s, this newsreel takes in all facets of Irish life. From the blessing of the Aer Lingus planes to Irish dancing in country halls, and to the Traveller community, it gives us a view into our past as well as an insight into what French reporters found interesting about Irish life at the time. 5 minutes.