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MA SPACE: Arts & Civil Society Talks

26th Oct - 7th Dec 2017
Thursdays: 2.00pm - 3.00pm

Venue: Merriman House Campus, Limerick School of Art and Design

Create in partnership with Limerick School of Art and Design, LIT Limerick is programming a series of Civil Society talks as part of its MA SPACE (Social Practice and the Creative Environment). Create encourages debate on the role of the arts in civil society and curates public talks and lectures which examine intersections between art and the socio-political.

Create with Marilyn Lennon and Sean Taylor have programmed talks that challenge and provoke the students. For the 2017 autumn term, the aim of the series of talks is to bring a range of experts to the programme to discuss their expertise and research concerns in fields that have discreet languages, methods and structures. Previous topics have included gender and economics; European policy making; asylum and Direct provision; politics of commemoration; environmentalism; participatory theatre; youth work and social policy.

The talks aim to encourage debate on the role of the arts in civil society and examine intersections between art and the socio-political. The Art and Civil Society talks also aim to build capacity to connect emerging arts practice to society and facilitate a broader understanding of societal issues and how they inform and impact on collaborative arts practice.

This series of talks will begin on 26th October 2017 with Karen E. Till. The second speaker will be Niall Crowley on 2nd November (speaker biographies and talk topics are listed below). Other speakers include: Laurence Lord on 7th December and John Bissett on 30th November 2017.

Karen E. Till: 26th October 2017

Digging, Witnessing and Decolonising: Towards Responsible Forms of Collaborative Practice through Memory-Work and a Place-Based Ethics of Care

Using examples from Berlin, Bogotá and Cape Town, this talk explores place-based forms of activist and artistic engagements that invite residents to critically reflect upon difficult pasts and imagine and inhabit more just futures.

Biography

Karen E. Till is Professor of Cultural Geography at Maynooth University, where she is also directs the MA in Geography and the Space&Place Research Collaborative. She is founding co-Convener of the Mapping Spectral Traces international network of artists, practitioners and scholars. Karen’s geo-ethnographic research examines the significance of place in personal and social memory, and the ongoing legacies of state-perpetrated violence in countries around the world. Her curatorial work invites artists, practitioners, community leaders, scholars and publics to explore how creative practices might enable more responsible and sustainable approaches to caring for places, shared environments and cities. Publications include The New Berlin: Place, Politics, Memory (2005), Walls, Borders and Boundaries (2012), Mapping Spectral Traces (2010), Textures of Place (2001). Her book in progress, Wounded Cities, highlights artistic and activist place-based memory-work and ethical forms of care in Berlin, Bogotá, Cape Town, Dublin, Minneapolis, Ramallah and Roanoke.

Niall Crowley: 2nd November 2017

Valuing Equality

Culture and values have to be of core concern in seeking social change. Yet, there is an increasing departure from core equality values being forced on civil society. The arts should offer some sustenance but rarely give expression to such values. Civil society has failed to advance work at the level of values. Only slowly are we coming to grips with the challenge: A more equal society won't be achieved by preaching but by drawing out popular values of dignity, inclusion and justice and enabling people to give life to these values.

Biography

Niall Crowley is an independent equality and human rights expert. He works extensively with the Council of Europe and the European Commission. Most recently he has worked to devise new values based approaches to promoting equality and human rights in the public sphere and within institutions. He is co-founder of the Values Lab. He was Chief Executive Officer of the Equality Authority for ten years from its establishment in 1999 and prior to that was co-director of Pavee Point Traveller and Roma Rights Centre. He is author of An Ambition for Equality published by Irish Academic Press and Empty Promises: Bringing the Equality Authority to Heel published by A&A Farmer.

Anne O’Gorman: 9th November 2017

Young People and the Arts; How Youth Work Policy Influences Art.

Biography

Anne O’Gorman is Senior Project Officer for Youth Arts at the National Youth Council of Ireland, and Course Coordinator of the NUI Certificate in Youth Arts. Previously, as Children’s Arts Officer at Draiocht, she developed the dedicated children’s programme. Prior to this she was an outreach officer at the Abbey Theatre, a youth theatre leader and a drama practitioner. She has been a board member of KidsOwn Publishing, a member of the selection committee for Ireland’s first Laureate na nOg (Laureate of Children’s Literature) and she represented the National Association for Youth Drama as Irish Animateur at the European Drama Encounter. Her work has been published in the Irish Journal of Youth Work Studies, Youth Drama Ireland, Inis Magazine and practice.ie. She holds an MA in Cultural Policy and Arts Management, and her recent research focused on ‘how and where leaders of Irish arts organisations build their skills.’

John Lonergan: 16th November 2017

How the Arts can help breakdown Social Exclusion and Alienation

Biography

John Lonergan is a native of Bansha, Co. Tipperary. He served in the Irish Prison Service for over 42 years. He was Governor of Mountjoy Prison for over 22 years and Governor of the top security prison at Portlaoise for almost 4 years. He retired in June 2010 and later that year his autobiography “The Governor” was published. Nowadays he delivers talks on a wide range of subjects to communities, voluntary groups, workers and students. He is an active supporter of many charitable organisations, including Barnardos. His philosophy is that change, personal or otherwise, cannot be enforced on people, believing that real and meaningful change only comes about through dialogue, consent and agreement. He is convinced that human beings change from the inside out and suggests that the big challenge for all of us is to find the humanity in others and then to nurture it. He is satisfied that the more people are in touch with their own humanity the more likely they are to treat others with humanity - show respect to gain respect.

Laurence Lord: 7th December 2017

Collaborative Practice

This talk will discuss the new ways to operate as an architect post-crisis.

Biography

Laurence Lord is an architect, curator and teacher interested in creating spaces that stimulate new forms of community and interaction. He is a co-founder of AP+E and teaches in UCD and CCAE. In 2018 Laurence is part of a team of six architects that will Co-Commission/Curate the Irish National Pavilion at the 16th Venice Architecture Biennale.