Clifden Arts Festival's launch literary and visual programme

In what will be its 42nd festival, Clifden Arts Festival is to return with a host of theatre, opera, dance, music, and artistic delights.

Taking place from Sunday until Thursday August 29, Ireland’s finest creative talent at home and abroad join forces to inspire new audiences to ‘think differently’ about the role of art beyond the everyday.

Oscar-nominated writer Colum McCann will lead a stellar line-up of some of Ireland’s leading artists and writers celebrating Clifden Arts Festival 2019 by breaking down barriers and challenging new audiences to truly connect with art for the first time.

One of Ireland’s longest running festivals will celebrate the country’s incredible cultural and artistic tapestry with a series of awe-inspiring exhibitions and talks. While highlighting the enduring success of Ireland’s most respected artists across the globe, the festival will remove cultural, price, and physical barriers to attract new audiences to diverse tastes and cultures.

Colum McCann, internationally bestselling author of three critically acclaimed short story collections and novels such as TransAtlantic and Let the Great World Spin, will join many more literary legends such as Moya Cannon and Thomas McCarthy to discuss their most beloved works. McCann’s short film Everything in this Country Must was nominated for an Academy Award Oscar in 2005, in addition to achieving many more national and international awards throughout his outstanding career.

Continuing this eclectic festival’s long tradition of compelling connections and interesting conversation, Michael Longley and Bernard O’Donoghue will captivate all ages with insightful poetry readings; with the superb musical backdrop of Brian Holmes on banjo and Danny Hunter on fiddle. Sinead Moriarty, one of the most respected names in contemporary Irish writing, will join renowned authors such as Mike McCormack to capture the imagination with enthralling talks and readings not to be missed.

Multi-award winning artist Martin Mooney will present an all-absorbing solo-exhibition of his works; consisting of powerful rural landscapes and floral still life paintings. Among the gold-standard accolades he has received throughout his 40 year career are the Richard Ford Award from the Royal Academy in 1985 and the George Campbell memorial grant in 1987.

Artist Dennis Mamalis will present ‘Connemara in Colour’ ; a unique exhibition of works that represent her “emotional response to 20 years of observing the landscape and the ever changing light of Connemara.” Ben Crow will also be presenting ‘Connemara in Colour’ in the form of a stunning glass collection that portrays the warm, sunset colours, and verdant greens that characterise the stunning Connemara landscape.

Internationally renowned Irish architect Sheila O’Donnell will join John Tuomey to discuss some of the practical and poetical aspects of their fascinating architectural projects.

RTÉ stars David McCullagh and Martina Fitzgerald will chart some of the key moments across their illustrious careers, while Tommie Gorman will host an in-depth discussion with former deputy leader of the SDLP Seamus Mallon to discuss his turbulent years as a constitutional politician and his central role in the peace process.

Inspiring the young, budding, creative talents of the future; a host of experts from the world of animation, dance, theatre, poetry and singing will share their wealth of expertise and experience with the next generation as part of a range of interactive workshops and talks running in local schools throughout the festival.

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