Expanding Spaces by Robert Kelly Opens on 24 September 2016

September 12, 2016


Artist Robert Kelly tells us a bit more about his forthcoming exhibition in Draiocht's Ground Floor Gallery:

Expanding Spaces is an exploration of liminal spaces as explored through the medium of drawing and printmaking, where the boundaries between both disciplines can sometimes seem blurred. The printmaking work in this series is currently focused around the use of creased and folded paper works. The work is studio based, that is to say it does not refer to outside imagery. While the work is non-pictorial and non-representational it is in fact an attempt to understand the natural order. Linear devices in the form of circles, squares and triangles plus other irregular linear shapes along with folds and creases in the print paper are used to explore spatial relationships. The works are less about image than they are about space and our perception of space.

Ideas and concepts from biomedical science and astrophysics can inform the work but the work is not an illustration of such ideas. The work is ultimately about itself and all that that implies. There is a sense in which the artist allows the medium to suggest possibilities even to the point of allowing the image in part to print itself. This is evident in the use of offsets as a result of creases and folds in the printing paper. This alludes to the notion of things happening from within. Being process led is another way of saying that it is the occurrences that happen while working which lead to future possibilities for image making.

Another aspect of the process influence on the work is the use of incidental elements used in registration and trial drawings being incorporated into and reshaping outcomes. In this way the drawing and the print process have at times merged and the detritus from one job has become the starting point for the next. The print /drawings are also a way of reducing the print process to its most basic level at times opening up its creative potential. It also throws up questions such as: What is an original print?  What is a print reproduction?  Preoccupations with themes such as a space between, bending space and expanding spaces emerge through a process led and playful approach to the media used. Spectator focus is thus directed not only to materiality but also to visual and perceptual occurrences taking place within the works. These are works that require attention and contemplation.

Robert is a graduate of Dun Laoghaire School of Art and Design, the National College of Art and Design and Trinity College, Dublin. His work is held in public collections by Louth County Council, County Monaghan VEC and in corporate and private collections in Ireland and Internationally.

Robert has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions with many group shows being curator led. Recent exhibitions include Interconnectedness - Droichead Arts Centre, Drogheda (2014)(solo exhibition). Selected group exhibitions include: Legacy -National Print Exhibition, Hyde Bridge Gallery Sligo (2016); Establish Change - Basement Gallery An Tain Arts Centre, Dundalk (2015); U Turn -The Library Project, 4 Temple Bar, Curated by Marysia Wieckiewicz-Carroll (2015); Mini Print International Seacourt Print Workshop, Bangor (2016 and 2014); Hot off the Press - Gormley’s Gallery, Lisburn Road, Belfast curated by Stuart Cannell (2014).

Robert is a member of Black Church Print Studio Dublin since 2010. He undertook a Cill Rialaig Residency Award in Ballinskelligs in September 2015.

Draiocht's Galleries are open Monday to Saturday 10am-6pm. Admission is Free.


Further information

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By Draíocht. Tags: Visual Arts, Robert Kelly,

D15 Youth Theatre Auditions 2016

August 12, 2016

D15 Youth Theatre Auditions 2016
Sunday 25 September 2016
Draíocht Studio

11AM-2PM / Draíocht

Auditions will be held for new members for Draíocht’s highly successful Youth Theatre, for those aged between 14-18 years with a love of theatre and trying new things. D15 Youth Theatre runs Tuesday evenings 7-9pm, during schools term times starting in October.

All welcome to auditions.
Drop into Draíocht to pick up an application form or download HERE

If you are interested in finding out more about D15YT, contact sarah@draiocht.ie or on 01-8098029.


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Collapsing Horse’s Conor at the end of the Universe will premiere at Draiocht in October

August 10, 2016


Collapsing Horse are striding through this year’s Residency at Draíocht. We are delighted to announce that Collapsing Horse will be continuing their residency and partnership with Draíocht through 2017.

In May and June we worked with animator Jody Barker Rockett, AV designer Mick Cullinan, composer Dan Forde and performers Manus Halligan with Aoife Leonard on our new piece Conor: at the end of the Universe (previously titled 46 Billion Light Years From Home).

We are delighted to announce Conor: at the end of the Universe will premiere at Draíocht in October with a total of 4 performances. Part puppet show, part installation piece, part animated film, part immersive experience, part ballet; Conor is a sensory and artistic journey through space at time-bending speeds. This stunning and engaging production uses puppets, design, animation and music as Conor and his granddad bring you places that you've never seen before.

In other news from Collapsing Horse, we have been announced as the new Artistic Directors of the Kilkenny Cat Laughs Festival in 2017 and our new show The Aeneid has been announced as one of the Tiger Dublin Fringe programme highlights and will run from the 14-24 September. The support and resources of our Residency in Draíocht has allowed us to be bold and make work inside and outside of Draíocht itself.

Supported by Draíocht, Fingal County Council and the Arts Council through Collapsing Horse’s Theatre Artist in Residency programme at Draíocht.

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Early Bird - Book Before 09 September 2016

August 8, 2016



The Gallant John Joe
Full price: €18 / Early Bird: €15

OCTOBER - MUSIC                    
The Dermot Byrne Trio              
Full price: €18 / Early Bird: €15

Reason in Madness - A devised reworking of King Lear     
TUE 29 – WED 30 NOV  8PM 
Full price: €14 / Early Bird: €10

Eimear Quinn - O Holy Night
Full price: €22 / Early Bird: €17

Scrooge – A Christmas Carol
WED 07 DEC  7.30PM 
Full price: €7.50 / Early Bird: €5


Tickets must be paid in full before 09 September 2016 to avail of these Early Bird Offers.
A maximum of 6 tickets can be bought at these prices per person.
Not applicable to group bookings.
BOX OFFICE 01 885 2622

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By Draíocht. Tags: Early Bird,

Des Kenny Reviews Any Observer by Jason Deans

July 8, 2016

04 July 2016 - Our Arty Blogger is back! Des Kenny Reviews Jason Deans 'Any Observer' ... 

Decay and impermanence are part of the natural order of existence and calculating the rate of dissolution and comprehending the process can prevent disaster. In 2008 the economic system collapsed because it expanded beyond its stable structure and like a bubble growing too big to contain itself it burst. The fall out of this disaster in both political and social terms have not receded beyond an unseen horizon of forgotten history but remains layered within touching distance throughout society.

Jason Deans' exhibition in the Ground Floor Gallery in Draiocht endeavours to understand and invoke the reality of our economic collapse. The sculptural forms act like props on a stage where choreographed decomposition is performed with theatrical pathos.

Gathered in a corner a number of pillars of various sizes bound together by a common fate, teeter on the edge of collapse. They have no binding agent to guard against crumbling decay. Irrepressible gravity will tug on them remorselessly and they will disintegrate becoming a mound of lustreless sand. The triumphant pillars of society will fall shapelessly down into a shameless state of mortal loss, created by their own hubris.

This theme exploring the dissolution of the building industry, where poor regularity inspections were a common practice, is examined in the piece Poor Foundation. Small bricks constructed with sand and cement seems to cling with geometric certainty to a corner of the gallery. The broad base holding up the pyramid form stands passively static but recent history informs us that the use of pyrite as a foundation material has caused great cracks to materialise in buildings. Already a straight edge begins to curve as the bricks in this sculpture move incrementally out of alignment reflecting the reality of the valueless homes people possess with such structural damage.

A work called Comes Tumbling Down consists of roughly moulded slabs of clay removed from barren Nama construction sites. It appears strong and assured but surrounding its base are great clods of earth which have fallen from the structure. The form is unstable, eroding before the viewer and the piece becomes a meditation on the overreaching and dysfunctional thinking of a privileged few during the Celtic Tiger era.

A drawing of electrical pylons copied from engineering plans appears to plot a course of conviction against the tide of uncertainty which echoes the arrested fragile psychological mood of the nation. On closer inspection the drawings are made with chalk, an unstable substance, whereas it’s normal for ink to be utilised. There is also hesitancy in their execution; lines waver outside their edges and at times are drawn loosely by hand instead of using mechanical drawing instruments. There are no regulators to inspect accurate plans so why produce them to the definitive standard required. Based on these drawing two electrical pylons are fabricated with elder wood. This is a soft wood that grows like a weed on empty construction sites. It has no monetary value since it cannot be utilised for kindling or making furniture. One pylon is called Powerless which is symptomatic of how the country was defenceless and unprepared for the approaching economic meltdown.

Yet throughout this economic storm the ship of state remained afloat and mass unemployment was eased by emigration. This is alluded to in the piece called Wandering were a ship made from elder wood, canvas and tar is lifted up on a parody of waves constructed by Ryanair boarding passes. Although at times the shows formal narrative is bleak and sombre, it is by confronting the harm done to society that the possibility to create an environment where collective healing may occur and the nation can recover from the trauma inflicted by the financial crash. 


Read more about Jason's show ... here ...

Desmond Kenny is an artist based in Hartstown, Dublin 15. He is a self taught painter, since he began making art in 1986 he has since exhibited widely in Ireland and abroad, solo shows include Draíocht in 2001, The Lab in 2006 and Pallas Contemporary Projects in 2008. His work is included in many collections including the Office of Public Works, SIPTU, and Fingal County Council. Kenny's practice also incorporates print making and he has been a member of Graphic Studio Dublin since 2004.

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By Draíocht. Tags: Visual Arts, Desmond Kenny, Jason Deans,

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