26 Aug. 2015

Liminal Spaces Exhibition

The Model, in collaboration with IT Sligo, are pleased to present the forthcoming exhibition Liminal Spaces: Art, Architecture and Place.

Saturday September 12th at 5pm

This ambitious exhibition of new work of six international artists and the entries to the Yeats 2015 International Architecture Competition, represents a year long collaboration between architects, artists, scholars and institutions in reimagining the potential of the North West region, seeking new territories of experimentation with ideas of site, place and of enduring relevance to the community. The starting point of the process was both the place and the poem The Lake Isle of Innisfree by W.B. Yeats.

Liminal Spaces Artists:
Felicity Clear, Michele Horrigan, Maurice O’Connell, Andy Parsons, Clea van der Grijn, Corban Walker

This project has been made possible by the support of Hazelwood Demesne Ltd, Yeats2015, IT Sligo, Western Development Commission and The Model

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Jennifer Donovan

21 Aug. 2015

The Model is recruiting!

We are recruiting people to fill a number of exciting supporting positions with The Model. Positions include two Front of House Assistants, who will support the operation of a busy reception desk and box office, and two Programme Assistants who will work across The Model multi-disciplinary programme. These roles are a great way to gain practical experience in a fast-paced arts centre. The roles are all 19.5 hours per week and candidate must be eligible for DSP Community Employment Scheme. Eligibility can be checked via Intreo. Job descriptions are available by request from imeldaryanjones@themodel.ie

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The Model

21 Aug. 2015

Psychic Lighthouse Closing Event Invitation

You are invited to particpate in a site-specific event that marks the closing of Psychic Lighthouse on Sunday, 30th August 2015, 7.30pm.

*As places are strictly limited, we ask that you R.S.V.P. to imeldaryanjones@themodel.ie

Please wear clothes that are suitable for the outdoors and footwear suitable for rough and potentially wet terrain.

Meeting point: The Model Reception at 7.30pm

Special thanks to AVA Systems Limited for their support of this event.

Click here to view full invitation

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The Model

12 Aug. 2015

The Model remembers Seamus O'Boyle

The Model Board are deeply saddened to hear of the sudden passing of Seamus O’Boyle, fellow Model Board member. Seamus was an outstanding member of the community who worked tirelessly for the people of Sligo, he will be greatly missed by The Model and all the people he served in the community. On behalf of the Board, Management and Staff, we would like to offer our deepest condolences to his family

Posted By

Tara McGowan

30 Jul. 2015

Family Fleadh at The Model

The Model is delighted to welcome back Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann to Sligo where the focus is on a family friendly fleadh with a range of fun performances, screenings and workshops for children and families.

A special Informal Music Afternoon curated by Seamie O’Dowd kicks off the week long of events at The Model on Sunday August 9th from 1 to 3pm. As always with IMA, audiences can expect a mixture of classical and baroque music with a special focus on Irish composers and a healthy infusion of traditional music in honour of the fleadh. Tickets are €5 and children go free for the afternoon of music in the warm and bright environs of The Model Atrium.

Next up The Model will present selected highlights from the IFI Family film festival in association with the IFI and Access cinema. There will be a range of screenings and a createschool workshop for ages 8 to 12 where will work creatively, using new media technologies, to storyboard, script, film and produce their own trailer.

An Cosan Glas return following their series of sell out workshops at the fleadh in 2014. As Gaeilge, participants will make their own illuminated lanterns to take home or exhibit in The Model. Participants can join a one-day workshop or come back a second day and join in the fun of making larger installations.

At the weekend families can enjoy a mini céili suitable for all ages. Learn how to céili dance in a fun-filled environment on the afternoon of Friday August 14th. Join us for a family concert with Kíla on Saturday August 15th- an outstanding Irish band who play an exciting fusion of Irish and Eastern European music. Don’t miss their wonderfully interactive and eclectic music, which is simply brimming with energy and vitality.

Finally we have street theatre with Ouch Entertainment’s ‘Hot Potato’ – an outdoor spectacle featuring circus, theatre and potatoes! Join us for this utterly ridiculous and very funny celebration of some of the important features of our Irish heritage including Peig Sayers and the potato. Suitable for all ages.

For more information or to book any of our family events at The Model, please see www.themodel.ie or phone 071 -9141405

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The Model

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28 Jul. 2015

Corban Walker


Corban Walker (b. 1967, Dublin, Ireland) gained recognition for his installations, sculptures, and drawings that relate to perceptions of scale and architectural constructs. His local, cultural, and specific philosophies of scale are fundamental to how he defines and develops his work, creating new means for viewers to interact and navigate their surroundings. Walker has mounted several exhibitions internationally since graduating from Art College in 1991. His work is part of numerous public and private collections around the world, including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York and the Irish Museum of Art, Dublin. Walker represented Ireland at the 54th Venice International Art Biennale 2011. Corban Walker has lived and worked in New York since 2004.

Walker will present a talk in the Bureau of Radical Accessibility on Wednesday 29 July at 1pm.

Posted By

Erin Fox

30 Jun. 2015

Interview with Seán Carpio

Seán Carpio is a multi-instrumentalist from Dublin, Ireland whose practice incorporates song, sound and improvisation. Carpio is a regular collaborator with The Model, having performed alongside various musicians in A Winter Light music project by Mark Garry. Carpio returned to The Model this April for a music residency in which he created Bog Bodies along with musicians and composers Robert Stillman, Anders Holst and filmmaker Ben Rowley. Ahead of his return to The Model, I got the chance to ask Seán about his influences and his connection with The Model.

EF: Who are your musical influences?
SC: Right, this minute I’m spending a lot of time listening to Dr. Garcia Zarate. He is a musicologist and lawyer who transcribes traditional harp and vocal music from Ayacucho in southern Peru for the guitar. For me, his music is from space. Even knowing the origins and influences, his performances of these traditional songs remain utterly mysterious to me.

EF: Which musician would you love to collaborate with?
SC: Not to sound too “cottage industry” but I love working with my colleagues, family and friends. Most of the long-standing groups I play with are from close relationships. As for the residency in the Model, this new group Bog Bodies comprises of Anders Holst whom I’ve known for ten years, saxophonist Robert Stillman who has been a very close colleague in various groups and projects, but also a new collaborator, film maker Benjamin Rowley. I’m looking forward to seeing and hearing what we make together in this focused period as we’ve made some interesting pieces already after only meeting once over a short weekend.

EF: Who has been your favourite musician to collaborate with?
SC: I’ve had a great partnership with Mark Garry for the past six years that I’m very proud of. Although he’d say he’s not really a musician, he sees a potential for music that is greater than anyone I’ve ever met and that’s always a joy to be a part of.

EF: How do you compose?
SC: I really like music that stays in a singular zone, that doesn’t change or move too much but instead subtly covers its tracks or plays with the memory of what has just been heard. I usually gravitate to writing pieces like that. I keep the performers very much in the forefront of my mind. The practical nature of that can reveal a lot of possibilities as to what the music can be and ultimately reduces stress in performance. I would prefer everyone to feel comfortable enough to improvise suitable to their disposition and without it becoming a discussion point. If I can supply music that makes the performers feel comfortably lost and inspired at the same time than I’m happy.

EF: How do you decide or plan your next project?
SC: It’s never been an outright decision on my part to start something new as I’ve mostly been a sideman in my career. Often times it’s a collaborative spark that brings it about. And once again it’s back to colleagues, friends and family that help to know what’s next. Right now I’m working on starting a label with my sister Eileen (Eilo), her partner Dara Smith (Arad/Lakker) and Mark Garry. This is a really exciting venture for us to be able to create and release disparate musics under one banner.

EF: How important are your surroundings to your compositions?
SC: Just like considering the performers, the space where it is performed is as influential and reveals as many possibilities. Most often for projects I’m a part of, venues are quite similar. Any changes in size or sound quality are circumnavigated through improvisation. There’s rarely a preciousness about sound quality in the groups I’m in, so we’re happier to find a way to become more a part of that space. I’m part of a new group called Coven that attempts to become the room in this way, to fill it in through various dynamics, and only that. With this residency in Sligo, I have a feeling that we won’t be so much working with the acoustics of the space as with the nature and the people outside. It’s very difficult to avoid being taken by the dramatic nature of the area and the people that live there.

EF: Can you tell me why you chose Sligo for your current project?
SC: This residency came about after myself and Robert Stillman worked on Mark Garry’s recording project A Winter’s Light, in February of 2014. We were preemptively planning this project at that time and felt that The Model was a remarkably supportive institution that would be ideal to work with. Thankfully they were willing partners in making this a reality. I’m really excited about this project as it’s a very new and unknown venture for us all and so having the Model supporting us is fantastic.

An audience is invited to share the initial results of this ten-day collaboration on Wednesday 15 July from 4pm.

Posted By

Erin Fox

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30 Jun. 2015

Artist-in-residence Talk with Amanda Ralph

Wednesday 1 July, 1pm at The Bureau of Radical Accessibility

Current artist-in-residence, Amanda Ralph invites you to a research conversation about her work on musician Turlough O’Carolan, a blind, illiterate, Irish Catholic living within the social and political landscape of eighteenth century Ireland. Her project is motivated by a desire to excavate some of the complexities underpinning the upcoming centenary of the War of Independence.

Reflecting on the conditions, for a blind man setting out in 1690 on an itinerant music career, has focused a key part of the project on the use of new technologies. The discussion will touch on using the Xbox Kinect to visualise a person’s body in space and in-progress, work on an inertial motion system being developed with Thom Conaty, Founder/CEO of Maker.ie

As part of the residency, Amanda has invited a dialogue with dancer, choreographer and Aosdána artist, Cindy Cummings who will give a performative slide talk discussing the different ways of collaborating with interactive technologies through dance and choreography.

So come and join us and help form this early stage research – there’s plenty to talk over from Irish history to new technologies and performance and dance.

Amanda Ralph is an artist whose practice is based on ideas generated through consideration of material in the public realm. Amanda currently lectures in sculpture, previously completing seven years as Program Director of the MA in Visual Arts Practices for critics, curators and artists at Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology. She holds an M.Sc. from Trinity College Dublin, an MFA from the University of Arizona, Tucson and a BA from the National College of Art and Design, Dublin. Awards include a Fulbright Scholarship and residency at the International Studio Programme at PS1, New York. Amanda has had solo exhibitions at the Orchard Gallery, Derry, Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, Dublin and the Irish Arts Center, New York.

Cindy Cummings is a dance artist (performer/choreographer/tutor) based in Dublin. Cindy has evolved a mult-layered practice which regularly crosses boundaries between dance, theatre and live art. Since 1986 she has created collaborative works with artists around the world for live performance, installation and film. This fertile landscape has been richly developed in her 15 years of work utilising interactive technology with US composer & media artist Todd Winkler (Brown University), Paris based artists Connolly/Cleary, half/angel dance company (Jools Gilson & Richard Povall, Irl/UK), Neill O’Dwyer (Dublin) and most recently with MIDASpaces (Dublin). In 2014, Cindy was artist in residence in the UCD College of Science. While there she performed with sound artists Strange Attractor (Dublin/Cork), created a performative lecture called ‘A Brief History of Contemporary Dance’ and a trilogy of video works focused on the physics of dance (‘Spin/Span/Spine’) with Professor Padraig Dunne. Since 2007, Cindy has been a member of Aosdána.

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The Model Sligo

28 May 2015

Recipe Swap with Daniela Pălimariu and Sligo Global Kitchen

Sligo Global Kitchen in collaboration with artist-in-residence Daniela Palimariu will host a recipe swap at the B.R.A this Friday 29 May from 3 – 5pm. Come along and bring a treasured recipe, savoury or sweet and taste some of ours! All are welcome. This project has been supported by the Arts Council’s Artist in the Community Scheme managed by Create, the national development agency for collaborative arts.

Posted By

Erin Fox

12 May 2015

Interview with Michael J Strand


“I did not see a path into art before taking my first ceramics class, and after this moment of discovery I knew this would be in some manner my life’s work.”

American Ceramist Michael J Strand visits The Model this week to present a talk on his work in the Bureau of Radical Accessibility. Ahead of his visit, I had a chance to ask Michael about some of his projects, his achievements and his artistic and social practice.

EF: I read that your work begins by scrutinising the function of art and craft in contemporary society. What do you think the function is? What do you think it should be?
MS: Traditionally function and craft has been related to how it in some manner enables the consumption of food, storage, etc (in the case of ceramics). For other crafts, there are equivalent functions iron works – tools, etc – and that function has served humanity as technology. There was a time when ceramic innovation via vessels was a high technology. So I examine this history and consider new ways that functional objects can operate – for instance, can a cup be a part of a mediation process, of course it can – and it has historically. But what other social functions can ceramic objects serve? These are the questions that drive my practice.

EF: Your artistic practice investigates the potential of craft as a catalyst for social change. How might you advise other designers use their craft in this way?
MS: Consider the space between what we make and the public as a viable space to design. That is, how we acquire, interact, encounter an object that is made and how that object serves a social situation is wide open for innovation.

EF: How did the Misfit Cup Liberation Project influence Cuplomacy?
MS: Cuplomacy actually began before Misfit Cup Liberation Project – but it is a highly complex project that is aiming to infiltrate a very powerful social system. The project, which will be delivered in September, has taken five years to develop. But with that in mind, when I developed the Misfit Cup Liberation Project I learned a great deal about the power of the narrative, the story. So the key to unlocking how to complete Cuplomacy came with the realisation that I needed to reengage with the public through a similar questionnaire that I used for misfit cup. When I engaged in this, the project moved forward very quickly, because the project was no longer extending from one opinion about the state of our political system, rather from nearly 1000 North Dakotans.

EF: What was the most interesting cup in the Misfit Cup Liberation Project?
MS: There are many – but I love the cup that I received from an elderly woman from an Island off of Tallinn, Estonia. The morning of the exhibition at the Applied Arts Triennial, she heard about the project from a television program and immediately booked a ferry knowing she had a cup for the project. She arrived at the opening, never having been to the museum and personally presented her cup – the last remaining cup issued by the Soviet Union that she had in her household. It was a moment of relief – this cup is a treasure, not for its material worth but rather for its connection to this moment of exchange.

EF: I read you studied psychology before switching to ceramics, did you have an interest in crafts and design prior to this?
MS: I really had no connection to art other than a really great high school art teacher. I did not see a path into art before taking my first ceramics class, and after this moment of discovery I knew this would be in some manner my life’s work.

EF: Having studied psychology and then ceramics, can you describe your journey from making objects to working as a social practitioner?
MS: The term social practitioner is a problematic term from my perspective. Although it accurately describes how I operate my practice, I have always pushed against any form of category. But certainly, my interest in psychology and social justice has a large impact on the reasons I engage in the social realm. I rather prefer the term a “Village Potter” – but examine the village in new ways. As a village potter, I assume a similar role historically, it is that I have extended function into new realms.

EF: What do you consider your greatest achievement?
MS: The ability to do the amount of work that I do, and maintain a great family life, for example my eleven year old son Ian is along for my time in Sligo. My son Malcolm was with me for a month in Europe for project development last summer and I plan on traveling with my mother-in-law to South Africa in February of next year. Specifically to my career – being named Ceramic Artist of the Year by Ceramics Monthly is something I could never have imagined, but what I am most pleased about with that award is the reality that it recognised an artist who is working beyond object innovation – and recognise what I do is not simply service but also an artistic practice.

EF: What is an important lesson life has taught you?
MS: I have had very low points in my life, like many people. Over the past eight years I have lost 200 pounds of weight and have remained sober for over a decade. My second chance at life, literally has provided a lifetimes worth of energy and direction. The lesson in all of this for me is to maintain a steady, consistent pace and focus on what you value. At times there will be opposition, but to remain true to the goals you have.

EF: Which artist do you most admire?
MS: The former mayor of Bogota, Colombia – Antanas Mockus – a social scientist who became a politician and utilised creative acts as a mechanism to transform Bogota during the late 90s. Also the late Samuel Mockbee – architect and director of the Rural Studio – who transformed architectural education as an applied and socially minded endeavor. Artists are interesting, but I look to other fields for primary inspiration.

EF: You’ve used cups and bowls as catalysts for social change, what’s next?
MS: I work in a highly organic nature – If I knew what was next, there would be no reason to continue. I am on the cusp of moving towards more issues around food and wellness within my own work – and with significant agency within these two areas via personal experience – I am looking at ways of merging my practice to include ceramics, wellness and food (which makes complete sense) I just do not know exactly how this will manifest.

EF: What do you hope to get out of your visit to Sligo?
MS: I am really looking forward to engaging with the community and the landscape of Sligo. I hope to plant a seed for future work – and to connect with interesting people. I am also looking forward to reconnecting with Megan Johnston the Director – a curator that I admire.

EF: What do you think of Irish craft and design?
MS: I am most familiar with Irish ceramics which has a long tradition of outstanding makers. Michael Moore and Ewelina Wojtowicz are two artists that come to mind when considering Irish based ceramic practice. I also very much appreciate the alignment of craft and design in contemporary Irish practice.

Michael will hold B.R.A office hours this week. His talk takes place at 3pm on Wednesday 13 May.

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Erin Fox

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