Ballinasloe-based professional artist collective, Group 8, launch their fifth annual exhibition of art and writing, After Garbally, tonight, Friday March 14 at 7pm in The Regency Room in Hayden’s Hotel, Ballinasloe. The exhibition will take place between March 14-17, daily from 11am-6pm, including Saint Patrick’s Day.
After Garbally is the result of collaborative work the group undertook around the theme of local landmark Garbally, in all its guises. Formerly Garbally Court, home of the Trench family - the Earls of Clancarty - since the 18th century, Garbally and its grounds are better known now as the home of two secondary schools: Saint Joseph’s College for boys and Ard Scoil Mhuire for girls. The Trench family and Garbally itself exerted an important influence on the town of Ballinasloe and its inhabitants.
Group 8 used Garbally and its landscape, buildings, and people as stepping off points for installations, photography, fiction, paintings, sculpture, ceramics, batik, and poetry.
Group 8 is composed of eight visual artists and two writers: Joyce Little - visual and multimedia artist; Tommy Campbell - sculptor; Walter Coughlan - ceramicist; Grellan Ganly - visual artist; Úna Spain - visual artist; Brendan Grealy - visual artist; Nuala Ní Chonchúir - writer; Zara Little-Campbell - writer; John Soden - painter; and Fiona Ormsby - textile designer.
The group’s mission statement sets out what they hope to achieve: Group 8 is a non-profit, professional arts group, united in the belief that art worthy of exposure can express the vitality of a community, and foster awareness, imagination, and co-operative learning between the artist and their community.
The group also hosts literary events, which to date have included readings, workshops, and book launches.
After Garbally, and its accompanying catalogue, will be launched by Father Dan O’Donovan. All are welcome to come and see sculpture, photography, installations, and paintings; listen to live poetry and fiction readings, and music from Johnny Johnston and Liam Loughrey, and enjoy a glass of wine. Admission is free, all welcome.