Residency in Studio Gallery 1 February – 21 April
Exhibition in Studio and Link Galleries 26 April – 24 May
Panchaea: In Search of an Equal Utopia and a Willing Suspension of Disbelief
VISUAL Centre for Contemporary Art
26 April- 24 May 2013
Denis Roche, with Emma Finucane, Brian Maguire and people using the mental health service in Carlow - Dolmen Studios.
Initiated and Commissioned by Carlow Local Authorities Arts Office (Part of the Percent For Art Commissioning Scheme)
Official Opening by Professor Declan McGonagle, Friday the 26th of April at 6pm
Panchaea is a new socially engaged artwork by Denis Roche, in collaboration with Brian Maguire, Emma Finucane and people using the mental health services in Co.Carlow.
Using the metaphor of a search for the utopian island of Panchaea, this project worked to address problems of social isolation and stigma as they occur for people living with mental health issues. Through a number of initiatives, the artists and participants embarked on a journey to illuminate the ways in which people with a mental illness experience life in their community
This exhibition at VISUAL presents some of the results of Panchaea’s two year engagement with mental health service users in Carlow County. It illustrates the work that has been done and the relationships that continue to be developed as part of this artwork. Emma Finucane attended a day clinic in Leighlinbridge for 6 months, where she worked with clients making prints of locations that held personal significance to each individual. Brian Maguire set up a painting studio in one of the disused wards in St.Dymphna's Psychiatric Hospital in Carlow. Here people attended weekly painting workshops and painted together with the artist.
During a residency in VISUAL, Roche positioned the gallery as a site of production for a boat, exploring through this process the potential to reach alternate or imagined territories. Together with Master Shipwrights from the Dunbrody Famine Ship in New Ross and clients from the Dolmen Studios, a river boat has been built and will be launched as part of this exhibition in the water feature at VISUAL on the 26th of April.
This large commission by Carlow Local Authorities Arts Office, co-funded by the Arts Council is an engagement with people who use the Carlow Mental Health Service and the HSE
Special Event: Friday 26 April at 2.30pm in the galleries at VISUAL
Lecture: Mind, psychosis and creation: Erik Thys, KU Leuven, Division of Psychiatry
Panel discussion with Professor Declan McGonagle, NCAD(Chair) Erik Thys, KU Leuven, Division of Psychiatry; Denis Roche, Artist; Brian Maguire, Artist; Emma Finucane, Artist; Sinead Dowling, Arts Office & Emma Lucy O’Brien, VISUAL Carlow.
Links to Panel Presentations by Declan McGonagle, Brian Maguire, Emma Finucane, Sinead Dowling, Erik Thys, John Carley, Michael Abbey and Denis Roche