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> Artist & Sculptor
For the last few years I’ve been creating work for festivals, such as Burning man, Decompression and Electric Picnic. Last summer, I decided to stay local and create work here in Galway. I’ve been involved in some local events and been helping out at the 2020 hub.
I’m working on a sculpture that I’ve been commissioned to do for ALDI in Knocknacarra. The sculpture is of an abstract harp. It’s a combination of stone (Knocknacarra means being hill of stone in Irish) and stainless steel which characterises the man-made structures that now inhabit Knocknacarra – the shopping facilities and the residential areas. The harp represents the harmonious emerging of the earth and its inhabitants. We’re hoping to have it completed by the end of the June 2016.
Visions for 2020
My vision is that Galway can demonstrate its capacity to be an innovator, to stand at the forefront of creativity and become a leader of the arts within Europe. Galway is a hive of creativity and the arts is continually growing and thriving. It has that overwhelming sense of community, diversity and belonging.
“I’ve seen this art therapy build friendships, give people a sense of belonging and achievement and help people in so many ways. Hopefully we can achieve the same here.”
Your Impact on Galway
What I would really like to do is help give the people of Galway the means to be creative and to create a more accessible arts community for anyone. There are so many creative people out there that have no facilities to create work for themselves. I would love to see a creative centre, based around an active workshop, to give people the opportunity to get involved in what’s happening locally and also to create events for the community – a kind of integration through art. I would like to see the people of the cities and towns banding together to create something that future generations can utilise, where they can go and be a part of diverse culture – young and old.
The idea was simply to simulate the conditions of human trafficking and to start a dialogue.
Project Ideas For Galway 2020
In relation to a project we did for Culture Night 2015, Jarek Smith, The Giddy Biddy Collective and I hosted the ‘Infinity Project’ – a project that created awareness around issues such as human trafficking and forced migration.
As part of the project, we had 10 volunteers spend 24 hours in a container on Mainguard Street with no food and just one bottle of water each. The idea was simply to simulate the conditions of human trafficking and to start a dialogue, which got people talking about the issue.
Since then, I’ve been creating a body of work that explores the physical and mental states human beings have to go through while displaced from their homes or forced to migrate from war torn countries like Syria. I would like to showcase this work as the exhibition called ‘Displacement’.
The second project I have in mind is part of Neil Butler’s concept – “An Artist in Every Place”. I would like to invest my time and effort into the idea of having an artist living and working in every part of our community, co-creating projects with members of the public. I would like to base this venture around a project that I took on for Electric Picnic 2014, where I created a fun and interactive mobile sculpture to attract festival goers and get them involved in the fun and diversity of the event.
I’ve seen this art therapy build friendships, give people a sense of belonging and achievement and help people in so many ways.
When we first started the build, people were intrigued and wanted to know what was happening. Before we knew it, they were coming out of the woodwork every day helping out, coming up with new ideas and producing things that they never knew they could. As a group, we started with four people but within a matter of weeks, we had 30 people coming and going whenever they had the time. It became a social and creative workshop where people had fun creating art. My idea is to recreate this for members of the community in Galway. I would like to set up a workshop where the community becomes the artists. I would like them to help us build a mobile sculpture that we can use for events in the community such as The Arts Festival and St Paddy’s Day parade.
I’ve seen this art therapy build friendships, give people a sense of belonging and achievement and help people in so many ways. Hopefully we can achieve the same here.