TULCA — Galway’s visual arts festival opens this weekend

TULCA 2010, Galway’s international festival of visual art, takes place this month and will see more than 40 national and international artists exhibiting in eight venues and public spaces across the city.

TULCA begins this Saturday with a performance art piece entitled Freedom from Belfast’s Bbeyond at the Spanish Arch from 2pm to 4pm. Bbeyond artists will work interactively with the crowd to make the process of viewing a creative one.

On Saturday shows will open across Galway at Galway Arts Centre, the Fairgreen Gallery, the Niland Gallery, the Docks Shed, Galway City Museum, Nuns Island Theatre, Gallery 126, and the Aran Ferries Offices.

The official opening will then take place in the Galway Arts Centre at 7pm, with an after party in De Burgo’s, Augustine Street, at 10pm.

The festival runs from November 6 to 21 and the theme is Living on the Edge: People, Place and Possibility, with The Salthill Prom, Joshua Tree in the Californian desert, the Amazon rainforest, and the outskirts of Lima in Peru being among the locations which have inspired the participating artists.

Now in its ninth year, TULCA will be curated by the artist Michelle Browne, who is originally from Bohermore. “TULCA 2010 will look at the notion of living on the periphery and what this vantage point can offer,” she says. “The works engages with places on the edge and the people who populate them.”

Among the highlights at this year’s TULCA is When Faith Moves Mountains by Mexico’s Francis Alÿs which will be exhibited throughout the festival in the Docks Shed, Dock Street, at the Galway Harbour.

The exhibition offers images of social empowerment and collective action, focusing on a group of 500 volunteers in the outskirts of Lima, Peru. Armed with shovels, volunteers formed a line at the end of a massive 1,600 feet sand dune and began moving the sand about four inches from its original location.

Also in the Docks Shed is Marjetica Potr’s Xapuri: Rural School, a case study of a primary school that has been built in a remote area of the Amazonian forest in the Brazilian state of Acre.

Galway and its surrounding areas will feature strongly in TULCA 2010. The promenade is the subject of Galway artist Ruby Wallis’ Auto Promenades in the Galway Arts Centre. Aughty Public Art Projects 2010 in the Fairgreen Gallery is based on the work of community artists Emma Houlihan, Marie Connole, and Tom Flanagan, and their work with communities in Gort, Woodford, Portumna, and Loughrea.

Also, look out for the work of artist Fiona Woods who has created an exhibition Common? specifically for TULCA. Common? will become a feature of the city for the two weeks of the festival, and will be displayed in Eyre Square and the Spanish Arch.

Admission to all events is free. For more information see www.Tulca.ie

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