Archived entries for

Constellations by Orlaith Phelan

C o n s t e l l a t i o n s
Wolfgang Tillmans, Rebuilding the Future Exhibition | IMMA

I’m photographs, sometimes photocopies, sometimes even photographs of photocopies. I’m taut, stretched and bare. Thin skin on clips balanced on an edge, human in and of paper. I’m framed, bound, sealed and dispersed in my own ordered disorder. I’m not hierarchy. I’m raised, pressed in corners, by door frames, over eyes, scattered flecks along each wall. Patterns colliding with vulnerable intent. I hide and I consume, between hard glass, white edge, and a devouring red that lingers as mirrored traces against the flat planes towards the hand that holds your dripping head.

I’m moments and the interstitial. The infra thin of borders and after borders, leaving both a position and a question. I’m that yellow line down the middle. The stain, the muck; the scratches that are not meant to be. I break, spatter and gather; a box of empties all used up. Systems, fragments and scraps of something dirty and divine. The excesses of the time; the love on the dance floor, the cock in your mouth, and the hands you hold in prayer. I’m the white wave catching colour, the fold that denies and caresses dark and light.

I’m showing you what makes the “me” of this, the pieces of now, and the things not of us. The measures of power, growth and decay at every scale. The cracks in the sand, spilling veins of disruption and collapse. I’m the apparatus and the ties, the plastic tubes that coil and hang. Colours that melt of horizons that must remember not to fade. I’m the light that hits your back, in the glow to the gutter of what came before the morning with the remains smeared at our feet. I’m your hand that rests in the crisp blue.

I’m of an old future looking back. Always changing; a process of medium becoming object becoming body. My body that’s been recorded, crumpled, erased, and exposed, but always rebuilding forward. I’m the black on brown, the tight brace on your flexed muscle reminding. I’m an approach without fear to push or pause. Cravings and thoughts of joy and distress; the singular pluralities of all parts human. I’m the intimacy of the explicit unprotected, and the desire that punctures the mundane desperate to seek and see. I’m all parts human and the need to be expressed.

I’m not a theme and I’m no one thing. I’m the opposite of your reductive thoughts and the will to be the obvious. An abstraction that keeps abstracting, but somehow I manage to hold and hover in the sounds of “just enough to think” and “let’s stop before we go too far”. A life of work from a work in life. I’m a thread of all things, like a constellation that burns in and out of sight; an offering of all points with nothing denied.


Orlaith Phelan is an architect and a current student of Art in the Contemporary World

Exhibition at 126 Artist-Run Gallery

Anticipated Fictions: Monumental Configurations at 126 Artist-Run Gallery from Saturday 27 April to 12 May.

126 Artist-Run Galley,
15 Saint Bridget’s Place,
The Hidden Valley,
Galway,
Ireland

Irish Association of Creative Therapists at IMMA

Within the Irish Association of Creative Therapists symposium at IMMA on the 27th April, ACW student and practicing artist Natalie Pullen is collaborating with art therapist Deirdre Ni Argain and contemporary artist Siuan Ni Dhochartaigh on a workshop exploring therapeutic experiences that happen outside the conventions of a formal relationship with an art therapist, specifically looking at the context of the contemporary art space. Tickets for the symposium are available on eventbrite.

ACW Events April 2019

1) ACW is delighted to welcome Dan Adler as this year’s ACW/ IMMA fellow.

During his time in Dublin Dan will lead a seminar on the Assemblage and what it means for thinking about both making and writing about art.

Dan will deliver a public lecture on the artist Isa Genzken and the Berlin Aesthetic on:
Thursday, 18th April, 6pm at the Goethe Institut, Merrion Square, Dublin. ALL WELCOME

2) Adrian Duncan discusses the influence of art, architecture and Berlin on the writing of his debut novel Love Notes from a German Building Site (The Lilliput Press 2019)

Tuesday 16th April, 6pm at the Goethe Institut, Merrion Square, Dublin. ALL WELCOME

In the book, Paul, a young Irish engineer, follows Evelyn to Berlin and begins work on the renovation of a commercial building in Alexanderplatz. Wrestling with a new language, on a site running behind schedule, and with a relationship in flux, he becomes increasingly untethered. Set against the structural evolution of a sprawling city, this meditation on language, memory and yearning is underpinned by the site’s physical reality. As the narrator explores the mind’s fragile architecture, he begins to map his own strange geography through a series of notebooks, or ‘Love Notes’. Paul’s story will speak to anyone who has known what it is to be in love, or exiled, or simply alone.

Both of these events are part of “Common Denominator: Art in the Contemporary World” at the Goethe-Institut Irland, a two-year programme of exhibitions, events, seminars and workshops in collaboration with Masters Program, Art in the Contemporary World at the National College of Art & Design, Dublin.

3) ACW Scholarship Deadline approaches

Every year ACW offers 1 MA scholarship to incoming students worth full tuition fees. It is are awarded on academic merit and all applicants are eligible, including EU and non EU students.

To be eligible for consideration for one of the Scholarship awards applicants should apply for admission to the programme in the normal way. Please refer to Postgraduate Admissions for application procedures.

Priority deadline on applications to all postgraduate programmes for 2019 – 20: 30th April. All applicants are encouraged to submit their application by 30th April. Only applications received by 30th April will be considered for an MA scholarship award. (The 30th April deadline does not apply to PhD Studentship awards.)

After 30th April, NCAD will operate a rolling closing date for postgraduate applications. Applications will be reviewed on receipt, and offers will be sent also on a rolling basis. Applications will continue to be accepted until a programme is full. Applications will remain open only if a programme has open places remaining, so please plan to submit your application as soon as possible.

Please contact the Admissions Office for further information admissions@ncad.ie

4) Dublin Digital Radio, Podcast – new episodes coming soon.
A show about art ideas and some other stuff too. In Episode one, we discuss artist Liam Gillick, the satisfaction of aesthetic disappointment, modesty in the age of capitalism and spectacle, and much more.

Listen again here: https://soundcloud.com/dublindigitalradio/current-on-liam-gillick-and-the-art-of-disappointment
Podcasts: https://listen.dublindigitalradio.com/podcasts
Blogpost: https://listen.dublindigitalradio.com/editorial?id=5c67ebf96426a80014290a19

Further Information

MA / MFA Art in the Contemporary World
Visual Culture is concerned with the spectrum of human creativity: art, design, architecture, advertising, film, media and aesthetics. We interrogate social theories and practices of visual culture and seek meaningful connections between history, theory and practice.
The MA / MFA Art in the Contemporary World is a taught programme that examines contemporary art practices and their critical, theoretical, historical and social contexts.
The course offers an opportunity for focused engagement with the varied challenges of today’s most ambitious art, bridging the relationship between theory and practice by creating exciting study options for artists, curators and writers.

MA Duration: 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time 90 ECTS credits/Taught Masters/Visual Culture Pathway

MFA Duration: 2 years 120 ECTS credits/Theory-Practice Pathway

Find out more or apply for a place on the MA / MFA Art in the Contemporary world:

https://www.ncad.ie/postgraduate/school-of-visual-culture/ma-art-in-the-contemporary-world/

Programme Contact:
Dr. Declan Long, longd@staff.ncad.ie
Dr. Francis Halsall, halsallf@staff.ncad.ie
Dr. Sarah Pierce, pierces@staff.ncad.ie

Contributors

Dan Adler is Associate Professor in the Department of Visual Arts & Art History at York University in Toronto. Adler’s areas of research include the history of art writing, modern and contemporary sculpture, German modernism, and the development and reception of the conceptual art movement. His other books include the monograph Hanne Darboven: Cutural History 1880-1983 (Afterall Books/MIT Press, 2009). He co-edited (with Mitchell Frank) German Art History and Scientific Thought: Beyond Formalism (Ashgate Press, 2012) and co-edited (with Janine Marchessault and Sanja Obradovic) Parallax: Stereoscopic 3D in Moving Images and Visual Art (Intellect Books/University of Chicago Press, 2013).

A former senior editor of the Bibliography of the History of Art at the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles, he regularly contributes reviews to Artforum. An alumnus of the Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program, he co-curated (with Lesley Johnstone) a Liz Magor retrospective exhibition at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, which traveled in 2017 to the Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zürich; the Kunstverein in Hamburg; and the Musée d’Art Moderne et contemporain in Nice, France (the accompanying catalogue, Liz Magor: Habitude, was published by JRP Ringier).

His other curatorial credits include the exhibitions “Francis Bacon and Henry Moore: Terror and Beauty”(2014) held at the Art Gallery of Ontario and “When Hangover Becomes Form: Rachel Harrison and Scott Lyall” (2006), held at the Contemporary Art Gallery in Vancouver and Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE).

Adrian Duncan is a Berlin-based Irish visual artist who originally trained as a structural engineer. He is an alumnus of the NCAD MA Programme Art in the Contemporary World.
His short-form fiction has appeared in The Stinging Fly, gorse, The Moth, The Dublin Review and Meridian (US), among others. His feature film Flying Structures on Irish engineer Peter Rice, co-directed with Feargal Ward, premiered at the Dublin International Film Festival 2019.

Emma Brennan’s Heed To The Mound, reviewed by Aoife Banks

Six contorted, heaving bodies, six mounds of dough, arms and legs entwined with lengths of proved flour, yeast and water. Twisting, manipulating limbs and torsos. Cold, thick slaps of bread dough against concrete. Brushing of feet and fingers, the clatter of elbows, palms and kneecaps against the flour sifted floor. Dusty sweeping of limbs. Panting fury. Laboured breaths. Exhausted sighs. Groans of resistance; of perseverance. Our bodies; our battleground.

Emma Brennan’s authored durational performance “Heed, to the Mound”, presents a group of women negotiating space through the movement of mounds of bread dough within the space of The Complex for Dublin’s 2018 Fringe Festival. Taking place over the course of 3 hours, physical exertion takes it’s toll on the performers as they use their bodies to manoeuvre and manipulate mounds of bread dough, equivalent to the weight of their own bodies, across the performance space. Heed brings to the fore the question of space, how it is occupied, who occupies it and how we negotiate our bodies accordingly. Moving mounds through the tumultuous terrain of gender politics proves no easy feat, as the excruciating and exhaustive work quite fittingly erodes these women mentally and physically throughout the duration of the performance. With puffed red faces and sweat glistened necks, the performers roll, twist, knead, push and pull their dough with ferocious determination evoking an emotional response from spectators. As tightly clenched fists punch into dough and miniature mountains inch across concrete we see the slow progression of women’s rights throughout history, we see the everyday instances of aggression and violence toward female bodies, we hear the hurt and fury in the exasperated groans of women on the battleground of Ireland’s sociopolitical landscape.

The undervaluing of women’s labour throughout history and the unseen emotional labour expected of women within contemporary society are brought to the fore in Heed. Taking inspiration from her grandmother’s tradition of baking brown bread for the family, Brennan questions the devaluation of homemaking skills, deemed as “women’s work”, in Irish society. In rural Irish homesteads, the process of baking seemed to go almost unacknowledged and undervalued compared to the work of men’s labour on the farm or outside of the home. Heed, to the Mound points a finger at society’s valuation of the workload associated with the traditional role of the homemaker. Through the poignant actions of a group of women labouring intensively, exhausting every part of their bodies, over masses of dough, attention is drawn to the intensity of this work and respect that must be commanded of the act of making. Heed emphasises the importance of valuing these acts of unseen and undervalued labour in opposition to the emphasis placed on working for monetary gain within a capitalist system.

Brennan refers to her process of preparing the dough as a metaphor for the creation of life. “With flour and water, we can create a living, breathing body, something which can grow through proofing.” The genderless, sexless, mounds of dough present each performer with an opportunity to experience a sense of self without the weight of gender bias, stigma, discrimination, fear or insecurity. With pressed backs, stomping feet and curled fingers these women manipulate their very being across a public platform. Each women tending to their own projected doughy selves; some rip chunks out and squeeze together again, some stretch and roll out for lengths becoming thinner and thinner with each inch, some repeat the pulling and folding of flaps; the slapping of flesh and dough reverberating through the room. When kneading dough you cannot be heavy-handed – it changes the entire consistency and texture, you can taste a bread baked with love or anger. A handful of dough receiving the blunt force, or gentle caress, of emotion; do our bodies receive the same attention from the space we inhabit? Politics are a tactile experience, and the daily micro-aggressive touch of our oppressive sociopolitical sphere lingers in our physicality and psyche alike.

The socio-political landscape of contemporary Ireland has been aflood with dissent regarding the relationship between the state and women’s bodies. In 2018, Irish society saw the culmination of decades of protest in the passing of the movement to repeal the 8th Amendment from the Irish constitution. The year also marks the centenary of women’s partial suffrage in Ireland; 1918 was the first time Irish women (aged 30 or older who were university graduates or owned a certain amount of property) were permitted by law to vote and run in parliamentary elections. Both movements saw women collectively struggling against structures of power that sought to oppress and define them physically, mentally, socially and politically. From the violent beatings of protesting suffragettes at the hands of police forces to the vice grip of the 8th Amendment and the mobilisation of women in the campaign to repeal it, the female body indefinitely exists as a site of conflict in a constant struggle against its aggressive politicisation. Taking place just three months after the referendum on the 8th amendment was held, Heed, to the Mound allows for a form of post-repeal conflict resolution to play out on the concrete floor of The Complex. The struggle of dissent against patriarchal structures of power echoes through the space as violent slaps of an elongated limb of dough reverberate through the concrete floor. Forcefully, in spite of her evident fatigue, a woman thrusts it behind her shoulder to gain momentum before hurtling it down upon the flour scattered ground. Some of the dough breaks away to hit a nearby wall. She repeats her action; the dough catches her behind the neck with a smack to her upper back; there can be no disruption without trauma. She perseveres.

Exhausted, and seemingly close to defeat, one woman halts her movements. The mass she had been inching across the space has begun to stick to the undredged floor and each push is met with increased resistance. As she heaves her body upon the mound to catch her breath and rest for a moment, she is spotted by the human dredger. This woman stands watching over the others, smiling gently, a mountain of flour in hand. Upon seeing distress, she tends to the struggling womens needs by sifting flour with great care around the stubborn masses of dough. A moment later, the performer is moving again. In times of mass dissent against oppressive forces of power, it is collectivity and care for ourselves and one another that carry us through. We must remember to pay heed to the mound.

IMMA Presents: A Vague Anxiety

IMMA Presents: A Vague Anxiety
12 Apr 2019–18 Aug 2019

Opening Thursday 11 April 18:00 – 20:00

A new group exhibition of emerging artists addressing new issues of the Generation Y.

Featuring ACW Alumni Marie Farrington and including work by Cristina Bunello, Saidhbhín Gibson, Helio León, plattenbaustudio, Brian Teeling and Susanne Wawra, with performances by Alexis Blake and Stasis.

ACW24 -TBG+S

NCAD ACW masters students are currently developing a publication containing a 16 part dossier under the theme of Co-Habitation and will spend 24 hours co-habitating, experimenting, workshopping, writing about, and mapping co-existence. Over the last 7 months, the ACW students involved have studied, written about and discussed philosophy, theory, and surrounding literature concerning contemporary art and writing. The 16 students taking part in this experiment come from a broad spectrum of disciplines and are concerned with the following questions.

What does it mean for a group of visual artists, journalists, curators, historians, and writers to workshop, debate, critique, perform, write, eat and sleep in a single studio space over a 24 hour period?
How will this experience of co-habitation manifest through the process of collective writing?
What are the broader socio-political repercussions of co-habitation and how do these issues affect our considerations of this process?
Where does contemporary art and writing situate itself in relation to this theme?
What does it mean to inhabit a space in these terms?
What individual and collective concerns will arise during this experiment?
And how will this experiment direct the final publication?



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