Athrú, an Invocation at Luan Gallery | On Show | Athlone Arts and Tourism

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Athrú, an Invocation at Luan Gallery

Athrú an Invocation featuring artwork by Mark Clare, teresa Dillon and Rosie O'Reilly at Luan Gallery posted: Jun 29

Luan Gallery is delighted to present Athrú, an Invocation; a group exhibition featuring Irish artists Mark Clare, Rosie O’Reilly, and Teresa Dillon.  The official opening will take place on Friday 7th July at 6pm with guest speaker Sarah Searson. All are welcome to attend, the exhibition will continue until Sunday, 3rd September.

Athrú, an Invocation is a multi-disciplinary group show presenting work by Mark Clare, Teresa Dillon, and Rosie O’Reilly. Responding to the many ways in which biosystems, animal and plant lives have been affected by climate change across Ireland and beyond. Athrú, an Invocation draws our attention to the transformative potentiality that sustainable practices and behavioural change can invoke.  Exhibiting artists utilise a wide array of natural materials including rushes and mycelium fungus and explore topics such as the extinction of indigenous Irish insect species, the lives of sea urchins affected by changing oceanic PH levels, and the life and death of the now extinct Irish Rannoch-Rush.

Athrú, the Irish word meaning to change, transform, or alter the course, summons forward Ireland’s ancient language, a reminder of the heritage of the lands we inhabit and of the creeping threat of linguistic extinction of the Gaelic language. Though the aftermath of colonial rule is ever-present in postcolonial Ireland, our indigenous mother tongue perseveres. As imperial forces plunder our planet in a seemingly unstoppable manner, and the lives that share this earth are threatened, we may look to the endurance of the Gaelic language as a source of hope that strength can be found in unity; that the powers that imperil us can be fought; that through passion and perseverance we can enact real change. Ultimately, the power to invoke ecological transformation lies within us. 

Westmeath artist Teresa Dillon’s Go Deo provides a holding space for reflecting and acknowledging the loss of the Rannoch-Rush. Go Deo (the Irish word meaning forever) is a eulogy to the Rannoch-Rush, also known as Pod Grass or Scheuchzeria Palustris. The Rannoch-Rush is a flowering plant that grew in parts of midlands bogs in Ireland, particularly in Pollagh Bog, Co. Offaly. Accompanying the video triptych is a vocal and sonic composition that draws on the practice of keening. Keening (crying/wailing) is a traditional form of vocal lament and mourning that was once integral to Irish funeral rituals. Across the duration of the gallery opening hours both the video and keening composition will slowly begin to break-down and disappear. Reflecting not only on the loss of species but also traditions of mourning. 

In Idirlinn, Shifting Silence, Rosie O’Reilly journeys through the layers of mythology, local wisdom, animism, blue humanities, and eco-philosophy. Through sound, sculpture, and writing, this body of work searches for new and hybrid ways to exist in 'the mesh' - a place of acknowledged ecocide and climate chaos. In this body of work, both process and materiality overlap through materials that embody themes of metamorphosis and transformation. It asks us, how can we dis-imagine the inevitably of things and form new layers of meaning, in order to build new worlds together.

Mark Clare’s The Unavoidable Interconnectedness of Everything: (re)Mediate is an installation that employs eco-engineering solutions to produce stand-alone sculptures, that attempt to act as functional structures for both terrestrial and coastal adaptation, in response to the climate emergency that we are currently facing. EIDOLONS examines the loss of 26 insect species in Ireland since the founding of the Irish Free State. Technically, a species is only considered ‘regionally extinct’ if it has not been documented in the last 100 years. Insects are the main contributors to biodiversity globally. As species are continuously lost to us through climate change and habitat loss, the issue we face as a state is that future generations will have nothing to compare these drawings with, and as such they will be lost from the collective imagination forever.

An accompanying programme of events will be scheduled throughout the exhibition. Luan Gallery’s Climate Change Outreach Programme, funded by Creative Westmeath, will include ongoing artist collaborations and an extensive public outreach programme consisting of a Climate Change and the Arts Seminar, Sustainable Arts Practice Workshops for children and adults focusing on ecologically friendly artist practices, and Artist Led Talks. This programme forms part of phase 1 of Luan Gallery’s 3-year strategy focusing on climate change, Irish ecology, biodiversity, and sustainability. This project aims to instigate meaningful engagement between artists, artwork, and the public in our county and on a national level. This series of artist talks will be aimed at both public and practicing visual artists covering various topics surrounding climate activism in the arts. Further information can be found on Luan Gallery’s social channels; Instagram: @luangalleryathlone Facebook: @luangallery

Admission to the gallery is free for groups and individuals. Tours for schools and groups can be arranged by contacting the gallery in advance on 090 6442154 or by email to info@luangallery. Luan Gallery is open to the public Tuesday to Saturday from 11am – 5pm and Sundays from 12 – 5pm. 

The outreach programme for Athrú, An Invocation, is supported by Creative Ireland and Westmeath County Council.

Westmeath county council Luan Gallery and Creative Ireland logos

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