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South Stairwell and Link Galleries

West Cork Artists Summer Showcase 2019
11 July to 7 September

This exhibition brings together some of the wealth of work by West Cork Artists. The work displays the variety and quality of work produced here and includes painting, print, textiles and ceramics. The show is grounded by the landscapes and atmosphere of West Cork. The sea runs through the exhibition like a wave gliding us through and giving us sense of place. A man with his fishing nets, and a piece comprising woven wires, meet on the 1st floor landing and allude to the connection to each other as well as place. A sense of the ephemeral, change, movement and transforming atmospheres is evoked throughout the whole show, cumulating with a line of works which capture this essence in the Link Galley.

The Fragility of Things 
An installation by Rachel Doolin
28 June to 5 August 2019

“Weeds are the boundary breakers, the stateless minority, who remind us that life is just not that tidy. They could help us learn to live across natures borderlines again” (Richard Mabey, Weeds, Pg. 291-292)

The Fragility of Things alludes to notions of hostility and survival in an escalating global crisis. A ‘Non-place’ is a neologism coined by French anthropologist Marc Augé. It refers to anthropological spaces of transience that do not hold enough significance to be regarded as places and where human beings remain anonymous. While gathering material for this installation I have found myself wandering in non-places, wastelands, derelict sites, roadsides and roundabouts. The disregarded territories where life thrives on the fringes, laying root in unsettled ground, obstructing our orderly maps of the world.

Writer Richard Mabey suggests that the maligning of ‘weeds’ as ‘undesirable outcasts’ to be considered a cultural signifier that reinforces hostile attitudes towards our environment, a metaphor that is further echoed to characterise current perspectives on migration.

In essence, The Fragility of Things responds to our rapidly changing world, where the devastating effects of ecological imbalance continue to bring uncertainty, loss and suffering to displaced populations globally.

Doolin’s practice marries art, science and environmentalism, while her research is broadly concerned with entanglements between nature and culture and the consequences of human influences on the natural environment. Matter and process hold precedence in Doolin’s approach to making. She collects, dissects, emulates, deconstructs and re-imagines, responding instinctively and exploring materiality on an aesthetic, intellectual and visceral level. Acting as an ‘Evocateur’, the artist creates, manipulates or combines various materials to create poetic provocations that reflect alternative contemplations on nature, culture and the human condition. Her sculptural works are simultaneously delicate and complex aggregations, which pertain to the vulnerability and persistence, the fragility and tenacity, of biological life in the Anthropocene.

In August 2017, Doolin was awarded an Arts Council of Ireland Travel and Training Award to undertake a research residency in Galleri Svalbard, an Arctic art Institution located in Svalbard, a remote group of Islands situated halfway between Norway and the North Pole. Doolin recently exhibited an installation of works titled - Silvered at the Doswell Gallery based on her experiences in a unique and deeply affecting landscape. Doolin is currently studying a MOOC: Introduction to the Arctic: Climate, provided by the University of Alberta, the University of Tromso and the University of the Arctic which focuses on the cryosphere, as well as the atmosphere and ocean of the region and considers how the Arctic is connected to the rest of the world.

Rachel Doolin b.1981 is an emerging visual artist residing in the South-West of Ireland. She graduated with first class honours in Fine Art from CIT Crawford College of Art & Design in 2015. Since graduating Doolin has been the recipient of several prestigious awards including the Arts Council of Ireland Travel and Training Bursary Award 2017, CIT Valery Gleeson Development Bursary 2016, RDS Taylor Art Award 2015, The National Sculpture Factory Graduate Residency Award 2015 and the Global Undergraduate Award 2015. In 2017 Doolin was awarded a Percent for Art Commission and completed her first large scale public art commission for Gilead Sciences in 2018. Her work has been acquired nationally by both private and public collectors including Cork City Council, Cork Institute of Technology and Cork County Council. www.racheldoolin.com

Arts for Health 2019
Keeping Visible 
Keeping Visible showcases a small selection of the many projects with older people that take place at the Centre and throughout the region, involving a team of professional artists each with distinctly difference practices, through both Arts for Health and Arts for an Active Mind programming. 
Arts for Health is a partnership programme based in West Cork implementing a managed arts programme for older people in healthcare settings. It takes place in five Community Hospitals, five Day Care Centres and Bantry General Hospital Care of the Elderly Unit. The partners are West Cork Arts Centre, Cork County Council, Cork Education & Training Board and the HSE. The HSE is represented through the Cork Arts + Health Programme, the Health Promotion Department, the Nursing Directors of Community Hospitals and the Day Care Centres, West Cork. For more information on Arts For Health West Cork see the website. 

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