Wednesday 1 May – Friday 31 May 2024
Bealtaine | Wednesday 1 May – Friday 31 May 2024 | Uillinn: West Cork Arts Centre | Image: painting of two boats on turquoise-blue sea – or Lough Ine, which is a seawater lake; the hulls of both boats are bright read, the one on the left with two empty masts, the one on the right probably a small trawler with white wheelhouse; there is an indication of a wooden barrier of some sort in the foreground, and there are hills in the background and a pale-blue sky

This year’s Bealtaine Exhibition at Uillinn features a new collection of work from Arts for an Active Mind reflecting their personal experiences of ‘Lough Ine’, taking inspiration from the heritage and cultural uniqueness of the landscape.

The exhibition will also showcase a selection of work produced in the last year through Arts for Health Partnership Programme including original drawings from ‘A Life Lived’ poetry and drawing publication. ‘A Life Lived’ evolved from a love of sharing stories in all their forms, and a desire to communicate these stories to family, friends, and the wider community. Working with writer, Elizabeth Rose Murray, and visual artist, Sarah Ruttle, as part of the Arts for Health Partnership Programme West Cork, participants from Schull Community Hospital, Skibbereen Community Hospital, and St Joseph’s Unit Bantry General Hospital, brought their conversations and stories to life.

Using the poem Unlegendary Heroes by Mary O’Donnell as inspiration, Elizabeth and participants worked together to create group poems in a similar format, to reflect individual and collective experiences. These poems were then shared by Sarah to inspire participants in their drawings, exploring touch, movement, and portraiture. The completed work represents the communities that connected through this project and show how, in the words of one of our contributors, ‘a life lived is a life loved’.

A series of delicate and distinctive embroidery works devised in conversation of ‘Favourite Things’ created with residents at Skibbereen Community Hospital working with artist Sharon Dipity. Beginning with collages then paintings traced or drawn freehand onto muslin cloth with fabric pens completed with embroidery silks and wool stitched into to embellish.

‘A Dive in Line’ is a beautifully restrained publication celebrating a small number of people living with Parkinson’s disease and their relationship with art and artist Aine Rose. The new publication by Aine Rose, shares her research and processes from the commissioned residency as part of Arts for Health Partnership Programme. The research project took place over Winter 2023 through Spring 2024, in Dunmanway Day Care Centre and Dunmanway Community Hospital in West Cork.

‘The Dunmanway Sessions’ is a collection of songs performed by residents at Dunmanway Community Hospital and Dunmanway Day Care between November 2022 and April 2023. Songs are sung acapella in English and Irish, and have been simply recorded without frills in the hospital and day care settings by contemporary folk artist Lewis Barfoot during Arts for Health weekly sessions. The songs are largely traditional folk songs from across Ireland, with many favorites including “Danny Boy” and “The Inchigeelagh Lass” which were learnt by the residents in their youth. The collection also includes a few stories behind the songs and the odd poem.

This beautiful archive exists as a legacy of the aural heritage of unaccompanied singing across Ireland. The Dunmanway Sessions will be available to stream for free on the Arts for Health Soundcloud page.

And finally a series of information panels mapping three new public artworks made with Arts for Health participants and healthcare staff working with artist Michael Greenlaw. The three projects each respond uniquely to their context: ‘Through the Window’ in the garden of Dunmanway Community Hospital, ‘Dunmanway Life’ a mosaic on the ramp entrance to the day care centre in Dunmanway and ‘Beara Map’ at Mural work in Castletownbere Community Hospital.

Wednesday 1 May – Friday 31 May 2024
Uillinn: West Cork Arts Centre
Skibbereen, Co Cork
Telephone: +353 28 22090
Opening hours / start times:
Monday to Saturday, 10am to 4:30pm
Admission / price: Free

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