Public artwork launch by artist Joe Caslin at Sullivans Quay

  • New temporary public artwork by artist Joe Caslin developed in collaboration with women from the Cork Migrant Center

Artist Joe Caslin work with Cork Migrant Center and families seeking asylum in Ireland to create new artwork for the Cork Midsummer Festival.

Two large-scale murals were installed simultaneously in locations across the city and County Cork, evoking the presence and absence of the migrant community in rural and urban Ireland.

Through a series of creative sessions at Glucksman, the artist Joe Caslin worked with a group of 35 women from diverse backgrounds to explore their understanding of the home. Participants had the opportunity to share their experiences, connect with other group members, and explore creative ways to represent their stories. Sessions supported by the Glucksman and Cork Migrant Center teams encouraged the group to examine the power of portraiture to communicate ideas and reveal ideas about model. Together, participants discussed posture, gesture and symbolism, before putting all their learnings into practice and sitting down for a portrait with the artist. Two of these portraits will be wrapped around prominent city and county buildings.

We at Glucksman are delighted to be working with artist Joe Caslin on a spectacular and compassionate set of additions to the visual landscape of the City and County of Cork. It honors the refugee communities who call the area home and the work of UCC as a Sanctuary University and our Cork Migrant Center project partners. I am particularly grateful to the project participants and the Arts Council for enabling the project to unfold in such an inclusive way under the thoughtful guidance of my colleague Tadhg Crowley, Director of Glucksman, Professor Fiona Kearney.

Joe Caslin is an Irish street artist, art teacher and activist. He is best known for his beautifully rendered pencil drawings, presented outdoors on a large scale. His work directly addresses the social problems of modern Ireland, on an unavoidable scale – confronting the topics of suicide, drug addiction, economic marginalization, marriage equality, mental health stigma, direct provision, institutional power, consent and, more recently, the effects of the Covid19 pandemic on young people. His imposing monochrome drawings define a moment in time while being deliberately ephemeral, often fading within weeks: leaving us with nothing but memories… and perhaps a change of mind and attitude.

The works will be installed at purple castle (*from July 17e*) and to Sullivan’s Quay, Cork City and were officially unveiled with a special community event on Saturday June 25.

The works will remain on display until September 2022.

Organized by Tadhg Crowley

A Story of Home is funded by the Arts Council of Irelandand supported by Cork County Council and Cork City Council.

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