Kevin Barry public interview for Limerick’s Make A Move festival

It’s hard to dislike Kevin Barry though, believe me, I’ve tried.  He’s an annoyingly-good writer.  He’s successful. He’s won lucrative prizes. Each of these reasons would be sufficient on its own to hate Kevin Barry, but what makes him even more irritating is his complete lack of arrogance.  He laughs at himself, he scoffs at his own eejitness, he freely acknowledges the random, arbitrary, serendipitous nature of his creative process.

kevin barry make a move festival limerick

If this man had any decency, he’d at least dress like a literary  clown, talk through his nose and patronise us with random quotes from German philosophers we’ve never heard of, but he doesn’t.  Instead of saying praxis and zeitgeist, he tells us about writing as work. About discipline. About tearing up blank sheets of paper.  He tells us about getting it wrong more often than getting it right.  Along the way, he tells us about his tragic adolescence as a red-haired Goth, his brief and sordid career as a dodgy impresario and his general approach to life as a man surrounded by a bubble, much like the notorious reality distortion field of Steve Jobs, but with a lot more bewilderment.

This man doesn’t take himself seriously.

How do I know this?

He said, I don’t take myself seriously.

What he does take seriously, however, is The Work.  He cares what he churns out, which is why he doesn’t churn stuff out.  He goes through three, four, even five drafts, with his digestive system becoming increasingly disturbed as he approaches the end.  He might spend four years on a short novel of 50,000 words, as he did with his latest : Beatle Bones (hat-tip to Captain Beefheart), exploring the absurdities of John Lennon’s interactions with Mayo County Council.

Who knows how long his sequel to Bohane will take?  Maybe not long at all, if we’re to believe him about the sounds and the cadences of the thing.  I suspect he already has it all sketched in his head and maybe even already spoken out loud to make certain it runs as it should with the rhythms correct and the words where they belong.

He sees himself as a Limerick-bred writer, but by no means a parochial one.  He recognises his influences, far less highbrow than the average successful author might admit, but more appropriate to the modern era. The WireThe Sopranos. Deadwood.  He listens to music all the time as he writes.  The soundtrack to Beatle Bones was the Double White album. He’s disturbingly honest (another reason to hate him) about the amount of inspiration he stole from contemporary television. He describes such near-mythological Limerick creatures as Michael Curtin, who had published six novels in Britain when Barry was a lad and he speaks of the great change that relieves writers of the need to live in London or New York.  Curtin, for his own part, is a fervent admirer of Kevin Barry’s work, though the two have never met.

Acknowledging the mix of Cork and Limerick, stirred about with some dub reggae and a little voudou, that became the city of Bohane, Barry speaks of the unique language patterns and vowel sounds that place this novel in a unique place, even though that place doesn’t exist.   Echoing Flann O Brien’s absurd and hilariously sinister Corkadorcha of The Poor Mouth, he describes Bohane as a place somewhere between Limerick and Cork:  A sort of spiritual Charleville. When I read the book, for the first fifty pages I thought it was New Orleans or maybe Hell’s Kitchen before the truth dawned on me, but there you are. I’ve always been a bit slow.

Bohane is Limerick and the obvious conclusion is this.  Surely if we can trundle credulous Japanese tourists around Limerick on the rain-sodden, misery-laced Frank McCourt trail, we can do it even better with City of Bohane tours. A lot less po-faced solemnity and a lot more dub reggae.

There’s talk of a TV version of Bohane, though he recoils in horror at the suggestion that the accents might not be genuine Limerick but instead the new synthetic, generic, robotic Roadwatch drone.  Aargh no!

How will the sequel work out?

He won’t say, apart from a hint. Bohane is gone to fuck altogether.

As I said, it’s hard to dislike Kevin Barry.



City of Bohane. Mad Max meets The Poor Mouth

Limerick Make A Move Festival



Mr World Challenges Mr Underworld – Kamal Ibrahim vs Donal MacIntyre

There’s no point rehearsing the dispiriting litany of journalists falling back on the tired old Limerick cliché as a substitute for proper investigation, and besides, it’s too depressing.  After all, we’re dealing with a fairly tattered flock of carrion feeders perched on that dead tree-branch, and pickings in Limerick are getting leaner by the day.

As the old vulture joke went, Patience my ass.  I’m gonna kill something, and that’s exactly what the increasingly desperate journalistic feathery ones are doing of late.  I hate to mix metaphors, but these vultures are one-trick ponies, and the Limerick story was the greatest gift a journalistic scavenger could ever have hoped for.  It was a step up from knocking on the doors of suicide victims’ families looking for a communion photo, and it had the veneer of being slightly more respectable, especially if you presented yourself as a gritty, fearless investigator, outraged at the behaviour of lowlife scumbags and determined to face them down.

Everyone’s a winner.

Your public is titillated.  The editor is delighted.  Your inner Walter Mitty (who might also be your outer Walter Mitty) is having an orgasm. The only loser is the truth, but that was never a hugely valuable commodity in tabloid-style reporting, on paper or on TV.

Of course, there is an honourable history of journalists as participants, all the way from Sean Flynn to Hunter S Thompson, but I’m afraid these three tattered carrion birds don’t fit that frame.  These boys are all about the self publicity and that’s why TV3 decided, yet again, to send Donal MacIntyre to Limerick, even though there’s no major crime, no killings and the scumbags who led the troublesome gangs are all in jail.  How odd they didn’t send him six months earlier, when Limerick was at the height of its City of Culture triumph.

Now here comes TV3 with an unnerving and sinister droning subliminal soundtrack going on beneath whatever trite, meaningless clichés he repeats, with video of feral children riding horses, just as they broadcast stock footage of Dublin car thieves last time they did a similar programme on Limerick.

Local man, Kamal Ibrahim, wrote an impassioned defence of Limerick, incorporating some of my own words, and debated with Donal MacIntyre on Liveline.  As a man who was born and bred in Limerick, who grew up here, studied here and had his entire being in Limerick, the former Mr World is well placed to challenge the former Mr Underworld.

Here’s what Kamal wrote:

Right, So I have a real f**king problem with this! (and If you’re from Limerick you should too).

Take if from someone in the business that actually knows!

TV3 have lost hundreds of hours of programming to UTV Ireland and are scrambling to create new shows to attract and retain their audiences. They’ve tried game shows like CrossFire and The Lie (which I myself did a screen test for). They’re launching a new Soap, Red Rock and are working very hard to develop programming that people will actually watch because shows like X-factor which still airs on the network will no longer be on TV3 by 2016, so yes, they have A LOT to be concerned about.

There are many talented people working at TV3 and over the years I have been lucky enough to get to know and become friends with many of them.

That said, I can’t say that I’ve ever been so pissed off at an entity in my life.

I just saw the teaser TV3 released on Donal MacIntyre’s ‘new’ documentary and I’m furious!

I just got back from spending Christmas in Limerick, my hometown. The place I grew up, went to school, got my first job, my first kiss, where I still have my friends and my family, the place that gave me the start in my career.

It was my intention, as it was for all of you in Limerick, to start 2015 with a positive outlook, despite all the doom, gloom & heartache that we (and everyone else) have to deal with, ironically, caused by all the ruling parties in DUBLIN. And staying in Dublin we can turn our attention to TV3 and the worlds laziest ‘investigative journalist’ Donal MacIntyre who, as is evident by this short clip, is also struggling to find worthy, relevant content to put on Irish television.

First, Donal made documentaries like Gangland Limerick, which used inaccurate statistics to dramatize the show. But I tolerated it. It was about all the crime in Limerick, the gangs and the headlines that it made.

Now, Donal has made another dramatic looking documentary also about limerick. But this time its not because of the crime or the gangs and the headlines, this time its about the LACK OF ALL THE ABOVE!

I feel like standing two inches in front of his face and shouting at the top of my voice to ‘F**k o** back to England and stop bullying Limerick.

This bullshit documentary commissioned by TV3 has a direct impact on the people of Limerick and more importantly, EVERYONE ELSE, especially those who have never been to Limerick before and Donal knows it. He also knows he would never get away with making something like this in the UK because he’d be sacked.

I work in television and I’ve sent TV3 a handful of fun, energetic, positive ideas for shows that could attract a primetime audience, written by me and my friends FROM LIMERICK.

But instead they’ve commissioned a ‘budget friendly’ programme that does nothing but degrade, humiliate and denounce my city and people of that city, a city I don’t recognize as the town that’s home to the World Music Centre, the Irish Chamber Orchestra, Munster Rugby, one of the worlds best sports & educational facilities at the University of Limerick, home to Paul O’Connel, Richard Harris, The Cranberries, Terry Wogan, Michael D Higgins, Peter Clohessy, Seán South, Michael Colivet, Willie O’Dea, Frank McCourt, Celia Holman Lee, The Rubberbandits and many, many, many others.

I don’t recognize the place where the creative people I know play music and perform theatre and laugh and tell jokes and cook and eat and make love and swim and fish and play sports and enjoy life. I don’t recognize that because that is not what I see when the story is told from the point of view of a faux-investigative television journalist.

Congratulations Mr MacIntyre because you’ve ticked one of the boxes when it comes to a ‘good TV idea’ – entice a strong public reaction.

But I suppose we should remember that when it comes to the business of television, it’s far cheaper to recycle old news than to invest in real stories.

Did anyone notice TV3’s extensive coverage of Royal Deluxe, Fuerza Bruta or Munster rugby?  Eh, that would be a No, Ted, since this kind of vulture journalism is not interested in good news.

Why do I care?  You might well ask and you’d be right to ask.  Why do I care what any bad journalist says?

Simple.  People believe this sort of nonsense.  It scares people away from our town.  It hurts us and it damages us.  It harms our lives and it harms our children, all to satisfy the dysfunctional needs of certain journalists and their editors.

That’s why we need to confront such nonsense whenever it crops up.

Enough of this shit.  We can’t let ourselves be defined forever by carrion birds.




Paul Williams: New journalism, old journalism and downright bad journalism

Donal MacIntyre, Laziest Journalist in Ireland



Limerick On A Beautiful Day

What a lovely morning.  What an utterly lovely start to the day, with blue skies and all the little birds threatening each other in song.  Not that you’d know it if you were listening to Radio RTEland, which informed the nation that we’d all be better off in bed because it was raining outside.

Outside their studio in Dublin.  Or outside their house, also in Dublin.  Or outside their car, on the way from their house, in Dublin to their studio in Dublin, but that’s the national broadcaster for you.  Meanwhile, here in Limerick, the weather was mild-to-warm with sunshine, but of course none of that matters in Medialand.

I got into the market a little late today due to a wild goose chase that should remain in the shadows, but when I finally made it, the rewards were great.

Very often on Saturday mornings, it’s nice to meet up with friends in nearby Nancy Blakes and have a coffee, but first, of course, it’s essential to pick up some delicious buns or cakes at one of the market stalls.

Limerick Milk Market 051



But of course, you can’t walk through the market without being accosted by vendors selling other delicious fare, which is why not one, but two Turkish chaps stopped me.  The lad with this stall sold me a really tasty pastry sort of thing made with Feta and vegetables, Baklava, he called it.  As I left the Big Top, another Turkish man handed me a delicious lamb sausage and I guarantee you, I’ll be back to him next week, but with photos and lots of lip-smacking.

Limerick Milk Market


On the way between one Turkish man and the next Turkish man, I met this charming lady selling Clangers, though I don’t believe for one second her story of how they got their name.

Limerick Milk Market

It’s another sort of pastry thing, with a sweet filling at one end and a meat filling at the other, though there is a vegetarian option for vegetarians and for people trying to convince themselves that they’re vegetarians, and for other people who think it will make them healthier, and why wouldn’t they?

The idea is a lot like the Cornish Pasty, except that it didn’t originate in the tin mines.  It’s actually from Bedfordshire and you don’t throw away the crust.  But apart from that, it’s the same.  I got a sample and it was delicious.

All that before I ever get my nice cup of tea, which will be flung in my face unless I present a nice cake to the terrifying German barman.  I’m no fool, though, and so I have my delicious little confection tucked away here, ready to present in return for a nice cup of tea.

Hello.  I would like a nice cup of tea, please.

You will do as I say.  We own you.

Have a bun.

Oh thanks.  Would you like a nice cup of tea?

It’s great.  It’s all good.  I pass a happy thirty minutes among witty raconteurs and the weather remains good, apart from the cloud hanging over me.  I forgot to pay the electricity bill and they sent me a snotty letter, so I’d better stroll down to the Post Office and pay it.

Before leaving, I bump into a New Zealand friend.   A rugby-playing Maori cannibal type.  What do you reckon our chances are of beating South Africa?

Pretty good, he says, to my surprise, me being of  little faith.

You reckon?

I rickon,  he nods.

I bid my friends a good day and wander off, still enjoying the indescribable mildness of being, until I come to O’Mahony’s bookshop, a place of iconic significance to me.  This is the place where, as a teenager, I bought most of the books that made me who I am today, and therefore it’s almost a place of pilgrimage.

And there, in my place of pilgrimage, is the man who single-handedly, though temporarily,  convinced me that journalism is dead.  There, signing his latest book, is Paul Williams, a man whose access to hard information about criminals is in direct proportion to his usefulness to his Garda handlers.  There he is, in a bookshop in Limerick, signing copies of his latest book about crime in Limerick, even though the lowlifes he writes about are all in jail, and even though he has not the slightest access to facts about life in our town.

Paul WIlliams

I pause in mild surprise , but then I notice the title of his book: Murder Inc. This, according to Paul Williams is the nickname given to the small family of useless morons who, for a while, sold drugs in this town.  Who gave them this imaginary  nickname?  Nobody in Limerick, or anywhere else, except in Paul Williams’s imagination.  Limerick people just called them what they are: scumbags.

It was such a nice day up to that point.  What a shame that Paul Williams, a man who knows nothing about Limerick, should be milking an old story to death, and what a worse shame that Limerick people might be lining up to buy his book and solicit his X on the flyleaf.

What a further shame that should slavishly and moronically repeat his blurb in their What’s On section.  I see that they’ve taken it down following complaints, but here it is anyway.

paul williams blurb limerickie


This is a website paid for by our local taxes and managed by employees of our local authority.  Ponder that for a minute or two.  Promoting a self-publicising fantasist who has done as much as any man to tarnish the reputation of our town by talking up the activities of a small gang of scumbags for his own personal glorification.

Is that what we pay for?

Anyway, the gloom didn’t last long.  Paul Williams is far too small a man to take up my whole  day, there was a rugby match to see, and besides, it was quite a thing to see him pulling copies of the book out of his arse as easily as he pulls facts.  He should charge for that.

Finally, let me confess that I didn’t really expect Ireland to beat South Africa but the cannibal was right, as usual.

Yay!  Take that, South Africa!  And take that, Paul Williams, when you’ve finished fiddling with your orifice.


Favourites Uncategorized

Tom Collins, Sign Artist

Here’s some more fine work by Limerick-based sign artist Tom Collins, this time the intricate craft of water gilding.



I was very taken by how well this project complemented a lovely old premises like Karl Kleiser’s piano shop, so I thought it might be nice to keep a record of the job, and then I thought, why not put a few of the pics together in the form of a little video?

Here you go.   I hope you like it.


The Pigtown Fling

Pigtown Fling

It’s been over a week now since the night of the Pigtown Fling, and still the town is buzzing from the success of it all.

True, the Crescent Hall was filled with more hipsters than a skinny-jeans fire sale in a vegan coffee shop, more beards than a Cecil B De Mille retrospective and more intense frowns than a French Art-House parody, but since this is Limerick, there was also pig on a spit, pints on tap and a pile of ne’er do-wells out the back smoking cigarettes and talking shite.

It’s all about the feeling.  Every bit of it is about the feeling, and even though that feeling comes from close on sixty unique musicians, all from Limerick and its environs, it also comes from the unique outlook of our people — a bunch almost entirely untainted by the affectations of other towns on this islands, provided you exclude a small coterie of knob-ends in the business community, and even they are a minority.

Limerick is all about the talent, and at the Fling you were falling over it.  Everywhere you went it was the same thing.  Excuse me, you extravagantly talented person, could I just squeeze past to grab myself a faceful of free roasted pig?

Certainly.  Thank you for calling me an extravagantly talented person.

No.   Not at all.  You are extravagantly talented.

I’m not.  The best you could call me is gifted.

You’re extravagantly talented.

I’m fucking not.

You fucking are.


That’s Limerick City, kid.  Violently modest.

I loved the Pigtown Fling.  I loved every shuddering inch of it, every last chorus, power-chord, heart-melting harmony and athletic hip-hop face-grinding second of it.  I fucking loved it, as did my friends, the hundreds of old friends I met, as did my children, astonished by the surfeit of talent available in this little town.

Jesus jumping Christ, where would you get it?

Presenting the show, for some reason I don’t quite get, were Pat Shortt and Paul McLoone, a man who has grown heartily tired of Prefab Sprout jokes over the years with their undertones of derision.  They did a fair enough job of it and they deserve thanks, but the people who really deserve the applause are those who laboured to make it a reality and those who went on stage to give it a soul.

I won’t name them, in case I might leave someone out, and also because who the fuck am I to be congratulating anyone?  These immensely talented people made it happen while I was just a spectator, though  a grateful and happy one.  Many of them are my friends, I’m fortunate to say, and together they showed yet again what a wonderful town we live in.

No need to say they should be proud.

They are proud and with good reason.



Pigtown Fling



Pigtown Fling

Pigtown Fling

GAA Sexuality

Big Gay Gaelic Football Weekend in Limerick

Today in Limerick we have the All-Ireland Gaelic football semi-final replay and the Limerick Pride march.

This means the town is full of big freckly-headed Mayomen, not a bit happy after an enforced long drive because the GAA stabbed them in the back, a gang of Kerrymen from just south of the border, and a throng of raving homosexuals in leotards and dresses.

What could possibly go wrong?

Not much, as far as I can see.  It just means the town is even more festive than usual this weekend and if we can persuade some of our visitors to remain for a night or two, we can look forward to massive partying no matter who wins the knockabout they call Gaelic football.


The Mayo supporters have a point when they complain about holding an All-Ireland semi final replay in Limerick.  As somebody said today, what kid grows up dreaming of playing in the Gaelic Grounds?  No-one, obviously, but for some reason, the GAA completely screwed up its schedules and contracted to host an American Football game instead.  Not being a GAA follower, I don’t quite understand why the semi-final could not have been played on Sunday instead, but no doubt someone will enlighten me.

Unfortunately for the Mayo crowd but happily for the Kerry bunch, the scoreline went the way of the southern visitors after a closely-fought bout of pulling and dragging, and so it happens that two hordes depart our home town, one to the north and the other to the south, each of them leaving a trail of destruction in the form of half-eaten ham-sandwiches, bottles of tea, Tayto bags and crepe-paper hats.

But of course, they’ll leave a residue of boisterous young foot-soldiers to inspect a town they’ve never in their lives visited, thanks to dire warnings from the Dublin meeja ( most of whom have likewise never set foot in our town).  What happens when the Kerry and Mayo hordes meet the gay wave, I simply cannot say, but it won’t  be pretty, and that’s why I’ve retired to my mountain redoubt for safety.

What a result.  The gays and the gaas.

GAA Pride.  You can’t beat it.


Limerick’s Doughnut Effect — Suneil Sharma’s Retail Vampire Plan

I see Suneil Sharma is back again, still carrying Marks & Spencer around his neck like a rotting albatross he impulsively shot long ago and far away.

I fear thee, ancient Mariner! I fear thy skinny hand!

In his latest attempt to crack the Limerick retail market, this ancient mercenary is yet again claiming that M&S will rent a squillion square feet in his proposed development at the Parkway Valley, otherwise known as the rusting hulk of a failed development from the dreaded Celtic Tiger days that stands less-than-proud on one of the main routes into Limerick as a testament to the hubris of naked greed.

Suneil, you might remember, is the man who gave us the toe-curlingly embarrassing Opera Centre title for another failed development in the city centre, a title, incidentally, which some  local hacks lazily continue to use even though no such development ever took place and never will.

At the considerable risk of mixing seafaring metaphors, poor old Suneil is condemned like Vanderdecken, cursed master of the Flying Dutchman, forever more to round the Cape of Good Hope in his ship of ghosts.  But in Suneil’s case, the curse is forever to peddle the Marks & Spencer myth in the hope of getting planning permission for some ludicrous shopping centre that will do nothing but distort the shape of our city.  As if the ill-conceived Crescent shopping centre hasn’t done enough to depopulate the city centre, Suneil Sharma wants to create another retail vampire on the outskirts, to finally complete the doughnut effect that has destroyed so many cities around the world.

Early indications are that the council are at best tepid in their reaction to his plans and with good reason.  Given the council’s proposals to develop a new heart in Limerick (unfortunately with the inevitable and depressing Marks & Spencer meme as a central element), they’ll hardly jump all over the Ancient Mariner’s plan to skew even further the shape of the city.

Limerick springfield monorailIt’s not that I’m against Marks & Spencer.  I’m as fond of classy food halls as the next man.  It just seems to me that whenever anyone tries to build a shopping centre, or demolish a city block, the first trick out of the bag is M&S.

I have here a promise …

What’s wrong with us?  Do we live in Springfield?  Are we the Simpsons?  Don’t answer that — maybe we are.   After all, we react to a promise of M&S as if some out-of-town fast-talking Lyle Lanley was offering us a monorail.

What we need is a sustainable, properly-executed vision for our city, not some tacky retail theme-park on the periphery, regardless of the short-term and short-sighted promise that it would create a few temporary construction jobs.

Haven’t we moved beyond the sort of shabby cajoling that takes us all for idiots?  Not necessarily, since we re-elected a healthy quotient of venal, small-minded, uneducated, money-grabbing cynics to represent us on the newly-amalgamated council.

Watch these fools carefully as events unfold.  Pay close attention to the ones who support this proposal, and ask them hard questions.



Arts Live recording

Busking at Catdig 2012

Catdig day again.   Can it really be a full year since the last time?  Looks like it.   The calendar doesn’t lie.

I followed these guys with a video camera and it was worth the time.




Limerick Music

Stuart O Sullivan Piano Recital in St Mary’s Cathedral

Just in.
Pianist Stuart O’Sullivan returns to St Mary’s Cathedral, Limerick next week, and to the National Concert Hall Dublin the week after.
Stuart is currently based in Limerick, and recently gave an acclaimed performance of Rachmaninov’s second piano concerto with the UL orchestra, a memorable evening at the University Concert Hall.
At St Mary’s Cathedral the pianist will play a mixed program of Classical and Romantic piano music.
This is an event not to be missed for lovers of classical music.

“Location” — An Exhibition


An exhibition in Occupy Space Gallery Thomas St Limerick from January 12 to February 4 2012

Location is curated by Ruth Hogan who presents four artists engaging  with concepts of landscape through the relation of space to the self.  These artists are Jonathan Sammon, Lisa Flynn, Michelle Horrigan and  Elaine Reynolds and their work is delivered through a combination of drawing, photography and Video. The exhibition is balanced in the gallery’s 3 areas  and is well designed in emphasising the elements of place, wandering and discovery that accompany the varied subject matter of ‘Location’.

The statement for the exhibition refers to a collective positioning of intent by the participants through the phenomenon of ‘Psycho-geography’.

The term ‘Psycho-geography’ originated in the late 50s and by the 60s in one of its many interpretations it became a lateral tool of anti-capatilist resistance used by the group of mainly French creatives who designed its outlines.     Its popularity in art circles stems from the visual research methodogies that have been suggested in the various documents associated with the group.

In their writings these ‘Situationist’ writers such as Guy Debord encouraged wanderings and skewed storytelling to develop surreal associations between the urban landscape and a wanderer’s conception of a journey.

These exercises  came to be documented as reconfigured maps and collaged photoworks in which juxtapositions of certain areas and states of mind achieved significance as a result of ‘psycho-geographical’ investigation.   While not a studied disipline, its ethos has increasingly become a reference in many contemporary projects where the communication of an artist’s involvement with place is integral to the reception of the artwork.

Positioned as such the work in ‘Location’ can be experianced both as research documents on the above theme and as individual works referencing its ethos.  As a whole these results respect the lateral overlapping that occurs when it is the artist’s intention to focus themselves (in and out of character) when engaging with both the conventional and emotional history of a chosen place.

Elaine Reynolds’s video in the blackened Gallery 3 animates an unoccupied house in an Irish ghost estate at night.

In ‘On / Off States’, lights dramatically flash the SOS pattern in morse code.  There is the appearence here of something that subverts the conventional image of a ‘mad party’ on the estate should the developer’s dream of that estate come to pass.  Without any sound to direct us otherwise we are left to deal with the scene’s silence as it becomes a visual echo for the chosen landscape and all associated with it.

In its darkened gallery setting, a documentary impression now appears to suggest the holding of a captured warning beacon. The artwork speaks of ‘systems set to a new purpose’ refering to the artist’s personal interest in fallen economic remnants.  More so the simplicity of Reynolds’s performative intervention presents ‘On /Off’ States as an effective, accessible and direct polemical comment on the psychic legacy of the Celtic Tiger.

In a direct micro contrast some of Lisa Flynn’s close-up video work  ‘Drawing Breath’,  ‘Hello Stranger ‘ and  ‘Untitled Breath’  in Gallery 1 focuses on detailed imagery of the body.  By the nature of its filming the work invites a response akin to intimately following a drawing in progress.  Her screens on the back wall now become the curiously interactive visuals that by location can be seen to speak first to the gallery’s window and street beyond.

Johathan Sammon’s boundaries can be regarded as traditionally ‘darker’ representing the sometimes heightened sensory psycho-geographic readings   of landscape made familiar by writers like Ian Sinclair and WG Sebald .   The gothic graveyard looming in Sammon’s film  ‘A Merry Peal of Celebration’ flickers between a 50’s B movie Hollywood set and a sort of 3D european fairytale.  In his presented visual notes it appears the landscape itself has to be unpacked before a path can be traced.  His statement mentions emotional detatchment.

Gallery 2 hosts photos, graphics and a video by Michelle Horrigan who presents a poetic fusion of biographical details of the poet Dante and the landscape of Baux de Provence.  This landscape with its representational rock formations is said to have been an inspiration for the ‘Purgatorio’ section of his Divine Comedy.  Her cinematic video ‘Purgatory’ is a true almost acedemic example of the wanderer making observations, links and formulating a many stranded narrative speculation towards a work that in its final form transends the investigative process undertaken for it.

This engaging show reflects well the curator’s intention to present artists who explore self, identity and place through a prism of landscape without overly referencing the august tradition of ‘Landscape Art’ in an Irish context.   The concept of destination is also collectively questioned in the respective pieces by a variety of macro and micro strategies and this is one of the exhibition’s many strengths.  Location also succeeds as an introduction to the fluid ‘almost practice’ of Psycho-geography by contemporary visual artists.