17th M

Múscailt (to awaken, to inspire, to create)

The 17th Múscailt Arts Festival will begin tomorrow March 6th and run until March 10th, with exhibitions within the festival running throughout the month. Perhaps one of the lesser known arts festivals in Galway, the array of free events, screenings and exhibitions should tempt anyone out of the city centre and into the NUIG campus. This years events are concerned with re-using, re-inventing and re-imagining the world through art and performance.

Artist Aideen Monaghan will be presenting large scale night projections of drawings and photographs resulting from a residency in the anatomy department in NUIG. She will also be showing glimpses of documentation from her time at the residency throughout the festival in the Arts Millennium building foyer. Her detailed and stunning works will illuminate the campus on Tuesday, March 7 from 6:30pm.

The opening day will see multiple events including an intriguing a video  installation  of a collaborative performance by two dancers, one in Galway, the other in Lebanon, dancing to the same song. Performed  by Ya habibi (O my love)  and  Taim Haimet / Amr Al Safadi, edited by Irish artist Ella De Burca and shown in the Áras na Mac Léinn gallery throughout the festival.

Ciúnas, a short dance video will also be showing. Directed by Bernadette Divilly Ciúnas (pronounced Q-ness) explores the place, power and presence of women at NUI Galway. This will be shown throughout the festival on screens around the campus. On Tuesday an illustrated lecture on the creation and development of CIÚNAS, exploring power, presence and place will take place. Bernadette will give some background to the project and discuss the creative process. This work is incredibly timely with the position of women within the faculty coming under much and welcome scrutiny.

An anticipated highlight of the festival will be Áine Phillips  performance of Bag Lady,  a tribute to bag ladies and homeless people all over the world. Áine Phillips is one of Irelands most celebrated  performance artists, with her work showing nationally and internationally to much acclaim. She is also the author of Performance Art in Ireland: A History, which provides a historiological insight into the development and production of performance art in Ireland.

Ananya Gupta will be presenting the installation Silhouettes of Life.  Beautiful silhouettes will be suspended in  glass cubes outside the Library. Gupta’s artwork comprises of intricate hand-drawn designs that are carefully cut out from paper. Her works will be on view from March 6 – 31.

Well known Galway street performer and artist James Fleming will be showing his exhibition of recycled works Sculptures from the Mobile Home, a quirky use of materials which will embody the re use , re invent and recycle theme of this years festival.  His works will be showing from 6-17th March in the festival Art Gallery.

While only a snippet of the events I would really recommend those who have yet to experience the festival and its diverse array of art works, performances, theatre, workshops and talks  to take time out this week and visit the campus.

Múscailt has a rich and varied programme this year with all events, bar one, free there really is no reason to miss this cultural offering. (Throughout the week I will hope to give some reflections on the work on show and the events, along with a short interview with the organisers of the festival).

Find full details here of all the coming events in Múscailt Festival.