TULCA 2009 - challenging and provocative art in Galway

A scene from Ann Sofi Sidén’s In Passing.

A scene from Ann Sofi Sidén’s In Passing.

ANIMALS PERFORMING Aesop’s Fables, a film about shopkeepers, birds, and children, and the questions Arthur Miller and Bertolt Brecht faced from the House Committee of Un-American Activities, are just some of the things Galway can expect to see and hear at TULCA 09.

The TULCA festival of visual art 2009, curated by Helen Carey, returns from Friday November 6 to Saturday 21 and will feature local and international exhibitions, live-art performances, and discussions and talks with artists. Admission is free to all events.

This year’s festival will feature one of Sweden’s most prominent contemporary artists Ann Sofi Sidén, who will deliver a profound reflection on the abandonment of newborn babies in In Passing

This is an urgent and visually stunning story of a young woman who leaves her newborn baby at a ‘baby hatch’ at a Berlin hospital. On monitors and projection screens, parallel stories featuring the woman and the child after their separation at the hospital are shown in black-and-white, documentary-feel images, and sequences in cinéma vérité.

In Passing will be shown in the Fairgreen Building.

Yellow, in the Nuns Island theatre, features artist Amanda Coogan dressed in a large yellow dress, continuously washing her skirt in a bucket of soap water, while Schubert’s music is played. The work refers to the Irish tradition of Magdalene Laundries, institutions that housed so called ‘fallen’ women.

Israeli video artist Guy Ben-Ner will explore Aesop’s Fable The Fox & The Crow in his video Second Nature, which will be shown in the Galway Arts Centre.

Second Nature is a video in three parts that blurs the boundaries between fact and fiction. One part is shot as a documentary about specialist animal trainers training a fox and a crow to re-enact the fable, but develops into a re-telling of the fable itself by the animals, interjected with a re-enactment of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting For Godot by the animal trainers.

It is strange to think that Arthur Miller, one of the greatest of all American playwrights, had to face the House Committee of Un-American Activities during the Communist witch-hunts of the 1950s.

In American Theatre, Pakistani artist Maryam Jaffri will present a slide piece featuring theatre production images from the 1930s to the 1950s that examine the relationships of power, performance, and the law. A synchronised audio track voiced by actors features excerpts from actual House Committee of Un-American Activities transcripts, including testimonies from Arthur Miller and Bertolt Brecht.

American Theatre will be shown in the Fairgreen Building.

Kitty Rogers will hold a residency in St Nicholas’ Collegiate Church. Entitled Artifact, the residency will explore the roles of the ornamental and decorative in establishing a spiritual space. Sculptor Elaine Byrne will hold a residency in the Galway University Hospital, supported by Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust.

Andrew Dodds will present the video Adrift in the Galway City Museum. This is an audio reworking of BBC Radio 4’s Shipping Forecast, where every word except “...falling...” has been removed from the text. For Tulca it will be placed in Galway Museum, looking out over the Claddagh.

Dennis McNulty’s installation and sound performance location/translation in the Galway Arts Centre deals with the friction between the planned and the unplanned especially with respect to urban space.

Clare Langan’s award winning Metamorphosis is a nine-minute film depicting a frozen glacial world in a perpetual state of transformation and motion, and ultimately chaos. It will be shown in the Galway Arts Centre.

Anne Cleary & Denis Connolly’s R is a murder story | V is a nature story | B is a children’s story can also be seen in the Galway Arts Centre.

Using a series of loosely connected texts and images, RVB tells three true stories. Filmed over three years, the events take place in the artists’ building in the north of Paris and features shopkeepers René and Claire; Japanese nightingales Vera, and the artists’ twins Bo and Lotti.

Paul Nugent’s Orphanage II will be in the Galway City Museum

Nugent uses his painterly technique, religious imagery, and symbolism to obscure what the viewer is looking at.

Ken Fandell’s Between Me and Galway Bay, will be shown in the 126 gallery in Queen Street. Between Me and Galway Bay is a varied investigation of contemporary mythologising, commodifying, and romanticising of Ireland. Fandell manipulates, collages, and then ‘stitches’ together photographs into long scrolls that dominate the length of the gallery as well as video and sound-based pieces. It references the song ‘Galway Bay’, the film Man Of Aran, and a Chicago pub called ‘Galway Bay’ near Fandell’s residence.

TULCA also places a strong focus on performance and live events. Honouring the tradition of the successful [email protected] 8, on the Docks, a marathon of projections and performance will take place featuring the work of artists who responded to the Open Call.

For more information see www.tulca.ie

 

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