As we go into the summer, Culture Connects, the Culture Programme of Ireland’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union, has concluded, while Ireland’s entry at the Venice Biennale has been unveiled and is welcoming visitors.
100% Cork presented by Cork Midsummer Festival; Work in Progress presented by Cló Ceardlann na gCnoc in Gort an Choirce in Donegal; the world premier of Quartet No. 5 by John Kinsella in the West Cork Chamber Music Festival; and Irish Youth Dance Festival performances in the Pavilion Theatre, Dún Laoghaire were some of the events that concluded the six months of Culture Connects.
Some 92 contemporary art projects and festivals made up the programme, co-ordinated by the Arts Council. It ran alongside events programmed by Ireland's National Cultural Institutions, as well as an overseas programme co-ordinated by the Department of Arts, Heritage & the Gaeltacht's Culture Ireland division, which comprised hundreds of events presenting Irish artists and their work in other parts of Europe.
At the 55th Venice Biennale, Ireland is represented by visual artist Richard Mosse with major new multi-media installation entitled The Enclave, presented by Commissioner / Curator Anna O’Sullivan, Director of the Butler Gallery, Kilkenny.
Throughout 2012, Richard and his collaborators Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost travelled in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The resulting installation, The Enclave, was the culmination of Mosse’s attempt to rethink war photography. His exhibition was especially poignant given the history of Ireland’s own involvement with peace keeping in the Congo and the continuing tragedy there.
The exhibition, funded by the Arts Council and the Department of Arts, Heritage & the Gaeltacht's Culture Ireland division, will run in Venice until November 2013. The Arts Council will then bring the exhibition on tour to a number of galleries in Ireland to ensure that Irish audiences can also experience this truly powerful work.
Looking ahead to the autumn, the window for recurring funding programmes will open in September with applications due in October. Please keep an eye on our website for more information on specific dates. We will keep you updated in future bulletins.
We are now entering the final months of the current Arts Council strategy, Developing the Arts in Ireland 2011-2013 which will come to an end this year. The Council is currently in the process of developing a statement of strategy for 2014 – 2016 which will be available in September.
Wishing you all a lovely summer,