Call for submissions


For Cork Midsummer Festival 2022, and responding to the context of Covid-19, quarantine and successive lockdowns, CONNECTION reflects on this unprecedented and paradoxical experience of shared isolation and confinement to think more broadly about the concepts of community, care and connection and the encounter with the artwork.
We invite artists from or based in Cork to take these ideas as a starting point for response and encourage unexpected interpretations. These could include: Projects that conceive of CONNECTION as a formal
device. Conceptual responses to the title or the ideas it generates (whether these be – for example – largescale social issues; intimate, personal interpretations of the idea of connection; or ideas that connect to popculture, politics, digital landscapes etc). Performance, visual practice (including paintings, drawing, lens-based work, sculpture, installation), sound art, film and video, durational works, site-specific works, workshops and/or social praxis. Pluck Projects are actively seeking venues in the city in which to exhibit/locate the work of
successful applicants during the Festival.

Pluck Projects are Visual Arts Curators in Residence at Cork Midsummer Festival. One of Ireland’s largest multidisciplinary arts festivals, CMF uses Cork as its backdrop and inspiration with events happening in venues, spaces and unexpected places across the city.
It provides a unique platform for national artists at all stages of their careers, presenting bold and innovative work that engages audiences of all ages. While rooted locally, including an annual programme of socially engaged and participatory events, the outlook is global with inspiring international artists and the exploration of burning topics both essential to Midsummer. The programme is developed in collaboration with many of the city’s arts organisations and institutions.

Formed in 2014 by Sarah Kelleher and Rachel Warriner, Pluck Projects work closely with artists to realise ambitious exhibitions of innovative and avant-garde work. To date, Pluck have produced exhibitions including Alice Maher’s Vox Materia at the Source Arts Centre in Thurles and the Crawford Gallery of Art in 2018, Gaol Break by Angela Fulcher in Cork’s City Hall in 2017, New Work from Glasgow at the Windle Building, UCC as part of the Cork International Film Festival’s Visual Arts Programme in 2015, and curated a strand of The Land of Zero at the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork 2015.

For each project, Pluck seeks to promote the work of outstanding artists through creative curation and critical engagement. Utilising the specific context of Cork Midsummer Festival, we are particularly interested in proposals that demonstrate a capacity to engage with broad and diverse audiences, and that offer unique perspectives relevant to Cork. Successful applicants will receive an artist’s fee of €500 and a budget of up to €400 for production costs. There is no application fee. Projects will be assessed according to the merit of proposals and their relationship to the theme. We encourage applications from artists at all stages of their careers.

Email your proposal as a single PDF file (max 10mb) to with CONNECTION Exhibition Proposal in the subject line of the email.

Please make sure your proposal includes the following:
CV: Max 2 pages. Containing name, address, email and website (if available)
Artist Statement: Max 200 words.
Proposal Summary: Please provide a summary (max 500 words) of the project you are proposing, how it relates to the theme of CONNECTION, and a description of the final work.
Supporting Material: Max 10 items which could include.
• Examples of work including details of material, dimensions, year
of production.
• Links to video and audio (please do not include audio or video files
in submission).
• Letters of agreement, for example from a group you plan to work
with or a particular venue for site-specific work. There is no need
to include letters of support with this application unless they are
directly related to the proposed project.

Cork Midsummer Festival and Pluck Projects are committed to equality
and to facilitating access for all artists regardless of circumstances. If you have any questions about the application, or details of funding and support, please contact Sarah Kelleher and Rachel Warriner at Deadline is midnight, 20 December, 2021.

FALL/OUT Catalogue

FALL/OUT offers a response to the work of artists included in Pluck’s Midsummer Festival Visual Arts Curators in Residence Programme for 2021.

Jessica Akerman
Pádraig Spillane
Anne Ffrench
David Mathuna and Andrew McSweeney
Vicki Davis

Written and designed by Laurence Counihan.

All texts and images © the authors 2021

Fall/out @ Cork Midsummer Festival 2021

We’re delighted to launch the programme for FALL /OUT at Cork Midsummer Festival 2021. This year, we are working with six artists who are responding to our theme through interrogating ideas of work, climate change, our relationship to technology, fantasy and nature, and interrelationships.

The festival runs in Cork City between 14-27 June. For more information on locations, times and tickets see

Jessica Akerman: Cork Caryatids

Jessica Akerman, Centre of Gravity, 2020 (Jo Hounsome Photography). 

Cork Caryatids celebrates the history and strength, physical and symbolic, of female labour in Cork. This series of banners makes reference to the Shawlies, Cork’s famous street traders, but also points to larger stories of changing labour practices and the ways in which these changes to the ways in which we work impact the urban landscape. Akerman’s imagery draws on the history of caryatids, carved female figures which were used as pillars in Classical architecture. Caryatids were mythological women subjected to the hard labour of holding up a heavy temple, but were also associated with celebratory rituals where the women would wear baskets of fruit on their heads. The graphic design of the banners uses the layout of Excel sheets, each cell filled with vivid colour, to engage with contemporary office based work practice and the new architectural landscape in Cork that accommodates
this digital labour.

Pádraig Spillane: Define Silver Lining

Pádraig Spillane, Define Silver Lining (detail), 2021.

This window-based installation, occupying the old Argos premises on the Grand Parade, will jostle between shop windows occupied and not-occupied. Incorporating abstract imagery derived from consumer packing and using the structures of commercial display, Define Silver
Lining invites us to think about the ways in we are affected by the technologies that support our lives. The title, Define Silver Lining, prompts us to consider the acceleration of technologies of communication and commerce both before COVID-19 and those being
amplified due to the pandemic. Define Silver Lining is accompanied by a soundscape by VEINS (Karen O’Doherty, Marc Rensing, Pádraig Spillane). The viewer is invited to follow a QR code that leads to a website ( which holds a sound clip comprising a melody line within noises made from the workings of electronic devices, electricity, the sounds of connectivity, the hums and statics of interfaces we increasingly connect with in our daily activities.

Anne Ffrench: To Hold Still

Anne Ffrench, To Hold Still (detail), 2021.

To Hold Still is a sculptural installation made from briars which spills through the doll’s house space of the Lord Mayor’s Pavilion. The work draws on the idea of suspended time in fairytales, where brambles surround and protect a castle’s sleeping inhabitants. During the first lockdown Anne Ffrench spent a lot of time in young woodland overgrown with gorse and briar, two impenetrable barriers. Briars, she reminds us, have a vital protective function, saplings need the time of the briar to establish and grow strong before the briars recede and trees take their place. During the first lockdown we heard reports of nature reclaiming space as humans stood still. To Hold Still wonders what if ‘lockdown’ could mean the briars were free to grow and encircle us until the threat had passed, much like the castle in Sleeping Beauty. Accessible to a family audience on the imaginative level of the fairytale, To Hold Still is a visually striking meditation on time, threat and care, and further, a prompt for us to be still and allow nature to grow wild around us.

David Mathúna and Andrew McSweeney: As Above, So Below

David Mathúna and Andrew McSweeney, As Above, So Below, 2021.

‘As Above, So Below’ is an interconnected audiovisual system comprised of two individual real-time scenes – clouds above, water below – each unfolding digital panorama influencing the behaviour of the other. In hermeticism the phrase “as above, so below” indicates that earthly matters reflect the operation of the astral plane, or in a more secular context it refers to the idea that the microcosm reflects the macrocosm. In its establishment and examination of minute relationships of cause and effect, the system takes causality and chaos theory as formal devices, building its structure around action and consequence.

Conceived of in Berlin by Cork-born artists Andrew McSweeney and David Mathúna, ‘As Above, So Below’ brings together different aesthetic and technical aspects of each artist’s practice and is a continually evolving project, changing its form in response to the nature of physical space and the influence of new creative technologies.

Vicki Davis: Meatàn

Vicki Davis, Meatàn, 2021.

Sited in the Port of Cork, Meatàn is an immersive living sculpture that references the live deportation of cattle from Cork and draws on processes proposed by industry to counter the environmental impact of cattle farming. This work developed from research into one of the Argentinean government’s solutions to the climate emergency: a balloon that collects methane gas emitted from cows. It is an invasive process, involving the insertion of a pipe into the intestinal tract of a cow, creating a hybrid between animal and machine that speaks to the agricultural industry’s relationship to global warming. The ‘living’ sculpture takes the form of a balloon made from specially screen printed cattle feedbags, which will inflate and deflate slowly over the course of the festival. Meatàn prompts us to examine the ways in which climate change impacts our imaginations.

Pluck@RHA Presents: Women, Artists and The Institution

Aideen Barry, Still from Enshrined, performative film, 2015. Copyright the artist

Pluck Projects are delighted to announce Pluck@RHA, a three year collaboration with the Royal Hibernian Academy as it approaches its 200th anniversary. Beginning with a conversation on Women, Artists and The Institution, this programme will consider the institution as a site of challenge, examining its inclusions and exclusions, how they shape what is considered to be art, and the ways in which these definitions have changed in our recent history.

For September 2020, we will be running the programme Women, Artists and The Institution

Feminist activism in the Irish art world has been a significant force since the 1980s when women artists mounted a challenge to the institutions that they felt had excluded them. Collectives such as the Women Artists’ Action Group argued that artists were not being recognized because of their gender by the museums and galleries that helped define Irish art in the popular imagination. Nearly forty years later, Abigail O’Brien, the first female president in the RHA’s almost 200 year history, reflected the ambitions of women’s artistic activism by foregrounding gender balance in her inaugural address. This echo is illustrative of the ways in which major institutions have absorbed activist demand into their own ways of thinking about themselves, leading them to instigate changes shaped by the challenges mounted against the establishment. In this series of seminars and screenings, Pluck Projects consider the legacies of the women’s movement in the Irish art world, and discuss not only the history of feminist challenge, but also how it has interacted with the interests and ambitions of artistic institutions.

The programme is as follows:

4 Sept 2020 18.00: 

Pluck Projects in conversation with Aideen Barry (ARHA), Pauline Cummins and Eithne Jordan (RHA).

This discussion will consider feminist practice, women’s artistic activism and the institution from the perspective of three key contemporary practitioners.

This event is free but you must register via eventbrite:

7th – 13th September

Online film screening: Pauline Cummins – Becoming Beloved (1995) and selection of recent works

14th – 20th September

Online film screening: Aideen Barry – Not to be Known or Named (2015) and Enshrined (2016)

24 September, 18:00:

Dr Fionna Barber and Dr Tina Kinsella will consider a longer history of feminism in Irish art practice and the institutional landscape.


Triskel Arts Centre, Cork

13 June, 8.45pm – 11.00pm

As part of our new collaboration with the Cork Midsummer Festival, we are proud to present this free evening of artists’ films on the theme of environmental disquiet. Exploring the anxious line between the natural world and our interventions within it, Burn/Out addresses our current global preoccupation with climate and environmental degradation, a preoccupation that has immediate urgency and relevance in Cork in the context of the OPW’s proposed flood prevention measures. The curated programme will bring together canonical work documenting 1970s land art, performance and body art with contemporary animation and new work by Cork-based artists, each addressing the increasingly fraught relationship between the self and environment.

Tickets are free and can be booked here

Wheelchair access and bathroom on site, Full access for visually impaired, guide dogs welcome.


Spiral Jetty

Robert Smithson

1970, 35 min, colour, sound, 16 mm film on video

‘The film Spiral Jetty is a “portrait” of Smithson’s monumental earthwork of the same name at Rozel Point in the Great Salt Lake, Utah. Completed in April 1970, Spiral Jetty is an iconic earthwork and Smithson’s most renowned piece. At 1500 feet long and 15 feet wide, Smithson’s spiral of basalt rocks, mud, and salt crystals juts out from the shore and coils dramatically into luminous red water. The film documents the making of this earthwork, which has attained near-mythic status as it has disappeared and then re-emerged from the lake over the past decades. A voiceover by Smithson illuminates the ideas and processes that informed the evolution of the work, with allusions to prehistoric relics and radical notions of space, scale and landscape. Poetic and oddly hypnotic, the film includes stunning aerial footage of Smithson running along the length of the glowing spiral in what seems like an ecstatic ritual. The film Spiral Jetty, together with a series of photoworks taken during the construction of the earthwork, have become integral parts of the overall project’.

Camera: Robert Fiore, Nancy Holt, Robert Logan, Robert Smithson. Sound: Robert Fiore, Robert Logan. Editing: Barbara Jarris.


Untitled (Grass Breathing)

Ana Mendieta

1975, 3:08 min, colour, silent, Super8 mm film transferred to high definition digital media

            ‘I have been carrying out a dialogue between the landscape and the female body. Having been torn from my homeland (Cuba) during my adolescence, I am overwhelmed by the feeling of having been cast from the womb (Nature). My art is the way I re-establish the bonds that unite me to the Universe. It is a return to the maternal source.’

Ana Mendieta

During a 1974 visit to Mexico, Mendieta began to produce a series of works in which her own body is immersed or shrouded within the landscape. In Untitled (Grass Breathing), she is immersed in the grass-covered ground, from which she emerges. A mound in the middle of a recently re-sodded lawn suggests the presence of the artist underneath. Over the course of the film, Mendieta, underneath the sod, inhales and exhales, and the movement of her body causes the sod to rise and fall, at first slowly, then with increasing vigour, and then more slowly again until she comes to a position of rest.

Laura Wertheim Joseph, ‘Filmography’, in Covered in Time and History: The Films of Ana Mendieta, ed. Pamela Johnson (Minneapolis: Katherine E. Nash Gallery, University of Minnesota, 2015)


Burial Pyramid

Ana Mendieta

1974, 3.17 mins, colour, silent, Super8 mm film transferred to high definition digital media

Mendieta performed this work on the rocky hillside beside a stone stairway that leads to an ancient pyramidal tomb in Yágul, Mexico. Several of Mendieta’s fellow students from the fledgling Intermedia Group from the University of Iowa, led by Prof. Hans Breder, helped her to clear the ground of stones before the performance. After she lay down on the cleared terrain, these students buried her entire naked body, except for her face, under the stones. Over the course of the film, the camera remains fixed on Mendieta, submerged under the stones, as she inhales and exhales. As her breathing becomes more exerted, the stones begin to fall away to reveal her body beneath.

Laura Wertheim Joseph, ‘Filmography’, in Covered in Time and History: The Films of Ana Mendieta, ed. Pamela Johnson (Minneapolis: Katherine E. Nash Gallery, University of Minnesota, 2015)


Ocean Bird (Washup)

Ana Mendieta

1974, 4.09 mins, colour, silent, Super8 mm film transferred to high definition digital media

Over the course of this work, Hans Breder films Mendieta from different angles, her body covered in white feathers, as she floats on her back among gentle ocean waves. Like driftwood, the waves push her feather-covered body into the branches of a toppled tree and eventually onto the shore, where she lies in stillness, as the waves lap over her.

Laura Wertheim Joseph, ‘Filmography’, in Covered in Time and History: The Films of Ana Mendieta, ed. Pamela Johnson (Minneapolis: Katherine E. Nash Gallery, University of Minnesota, 2015)



Vivienne Dick

1985, 8 mins, colour, sound,

Rothach (1985) was filmed on 16mm in the Donegal countryside and is composed of a rhythmic series of pans across a barren rural landscape that recalls the setting for Michael Snow’s monumental work La Region Centrale. Unlike Snow’s rocky landscape, however, Rothach is filled with evidence of activity. Scenes of a child playing the fiddle are interspersed with shots of farm machinery and turf-cutting on the bog. Many of these images are strikingly picturesque and reminiscent of iconic Irish colour postcards. But the serenity of the location is gradually undercut, both by the soundtrack, which changes from a melody into a series of shifting electronic pulses, and by the uncanny presence of the same child in different locations. It soon becomes apparent that this landscape is highly constructed.
Maeve Connolly, ‘From no Wave to national cinema: the cultural landscape of Vivienne Dick’s early Films (1978-1985)’, National Cinema and Beyond, (Dublin, Four Courts Press, 2004)



Vivienne Dick

2013, 13.38 mins, colour, stereo

Augenblick is a meditation on age, and the evolution from a mythological to a human and then to a technologically centered world. The film features three actresses, a trinity of female ages, and quotes literary and philosophical sources from Rousseau to Noah Harari. Moving from The Age of Enlightenment into a digital world, what becomes of out relationship to each other and to the earth?



Atoosa Pour Hosseini

2018, 15 Minutes, Super8mm, colour, sound

Produced by Experimental Film Society & Funded by the Arts Council of Ireland.

Antler won the special award of The Unforseen – International Experimental Film Festival 2018 in Belgrade, Serbia. Here is the jury’s response on the Antler’s award:

“A film of subtle poetics and expressive aesthetics achieved through the hypnotizing intertwining of archive and authorial footage, “Antler” erases the boundaries between fiction and documentary, introducing the viewer to a mysterious and, to a certain degree, fairy-tale-ish world of oneiric atmosphere. Formally seductive, and challenging to decipher, this “ecological fantasy” (for the lack of a more precise definition) transforms a botanical garden into a laboratory of evocative images and sounds, in a process that could be identified as alchemy.”




Vox Materia: performance by Vicky Langan

Thursday 15 November, 2018. Crawford Art Gallery.

Vicky Langan will present 3 performances in response to Alice Maher’s Vox Materia, in the library of the Crawford Art Gallery. Interacting physically with Vox Materia’s bronze elements and drawing on the ideas raised by the show, Langan will layer physical gesture with scraps of sound to create an intensely personal response to Maher’s work.

Artist’ Bio

Vicky Langan (b. 1986) is a Cork-based artist whose practice operates across several often overlapping fields, chiefly performance, sound, and film. Langan both embraces and projects vulnerability, offering an intimate territory loaded with personal symbolism and unguarded emotion. With a focus on the sounds of the body and its functions, involving contact-­miked skin, amplified breath and live electronic manipulation, Langan’s work sits between sound and performance art. Using simple raw materials such as domestic objects, hair and magnetic tape, she layers physical gestures and scraps of sound to create intensely personal imaginary landscapes. Mundane domesticity is explored as a temporal space where the material body and sensual inner worlds mesh. In opening herself emotionally, she creates warm yet discomforting rituals that at once embrace the viewer and remain resolutely private, exploring the limits of what can be shared between people and what must remain mysterious.

Free event. Book your place at

Extended deadline CFP: Conference: Re-Framing the 90s: Historicising late 20th century Irish Practice, 2-3 November, Cork.


2-3 November 2018, Cork.

Reframing the ‘90s seeks to reassess the ways in which Irish art of the 1990s has been understood. Organised to coincide with Alice Maher’s exhibition of new work Vox Materia at the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork, we use this opportunity to look back at the emergence of a generation of practitioners that redefined Irish art.  The 1990s saw an expansion of sculptural practice informed by international postmodernisms, the rise of installation art, a return to figuration influenced by feminism, and a revisitation of the natural world that had dominated Irish art up until that point. Diverging consciously from assessments that homogenise art North and South of the border, as well as within the Republic, this conference instead positions Irish art practice as heterogeneous and deeply connected to wider international aesthetic debates. We seek to establish a better sense of the variations within Irish art, the trends that have yet to be given concerted scholarly attention and to better understand the varied topography of the art world during the 1990s. We seek to establish a better sense of the variations within Irish art, the trends that have yet to be given concerted scholarly attention and to better understand the varied topography of the art world during the 1990s.

This conference aims to reconfigure dominant readings of Irish art history that privilege the monograph or survey. Following the scholarly ground established by criticism such as Fionna Barber’s important text Art in Ireland Since 1910, Peter Shortt’s extensive study on Rosc, and Aine Phillips’ discipline-defining Performance Art in Ireland, we seek to dedicate similar considered attention to the emergent practices of the 1990s. Key questions for this conference focus on: understanding this period historically, thinking through the influence of the political and social landscape of 1990s Ireland, considering the ways in which the international art world was both influential and increasingly accessible, and examining the role played by artists’ groups, collectives and networks within and without the island of Ireland. We also aim to consider those artists and artistic groups that have as yet not received significant critical attention including Pat Looby, Danny McCarthy, Pauline Cummins , to name a few.

Papers could consider any topic relating to this reassessment. Examples might include:

  • Developments in Irish art during the 1990s
  • Social and political histories and their influence on artistic practice.
  • Artists groups, networks and collectives.
  • Neglected and overlooked movements and practices.
  • The influence of the Troubles and dialogues between North and South.
  • Diasporic practices: connections between Ireland and elsewhere.
  • The Biennialisation of the art world and its influence on Irish practice.
  • Continuities and divergences from traditions established in Irish art: the landscape, the rural/urban divide, painting and painterly practice, reimagining important Irish art historical tendencies such as the Celtic Revival, social realism, religious imagery.
  • The proliferation of unconventional materials or media; tactile, embodied, repellent, physical, corporeal and associated themes including animal nature, fetishism, female desire and sensuality.

Papers should be thirty minutes in length. Please send abstracts of 300 words in length and a short bio (50 words) to on the 10 September 2018

This conference is organised by Pluck Projects – Sarah Kelleher (University College Cork) and Dr Rachel Warriner (City and Guilds of London Art School) – curators of Vox Materia by Alice Maher at the Source Arts Centre, Thurles (March 29 – May 5) and the Crawford Art Gallery (September 7 – November 17).

Alice Maher: Vox Materia

Vox Hybrida Alice Maher 2018.jpg

Pluck Projects are delighted to announce Vox Materia by Alice Maher at the Source Arts Centre, Thurles, Tipperary, opening on the 29th March, 2018.

Vox Materia comprises a multi-part installation of sculpture and works on paper. Stemming from Maher’s consideration of a 12th Century mermaid carving at nearby Kilcooley Abbey, this show meditates on voice and silence. The mermaid is a hybrid creature that transgresses boundaries between human and animal, and is often associated with traumatic loss of voice. Maher deploys the mermaid not as a motif, but as an ambiguous and powerful conceptual tool to explore ideas of language, embodiment, agency, and autonomy. The artist begins by adopting and documenting contorted postures; creating strained silhouettes that gesture towards a language of the body in extremis. Vox Materia exploits the tactile, contingent qualities of wood relief print and watercolour to articulate amoebic, inter-elementary forms while a series of hand-held sculptural forms create new material and corporeal vocabularies.

Alice Maher is one of Ireland’s leading artists who has produced iconic work in film, drawing, sculpture, and installation. Since her first major solo exhibition in the Douglas Hyde Gallery in 1994 and her representation of Ireland at the Sao Paolo Bienniale in the same year, she has held major shows in IMMA, the RHA, The David Nolan Gallery, New York, the Brighton and Hove Museums and Purdy Hicks, London among many others. Her work is held in Irish and international collections including the Neuberger Museum, New York, the Hammond Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MoMA, New York, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, the British Museum, London and the Georges Pompidou Centre, Paris. She is a member of Aosdána.

The exhibition at the Source Arts Centre  will be followed by its installation at the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork later this year. These locations are not only important cultural sites in themselves, but also are significant to the artist. Maher is a Tipperary native; she was born there in 1956 and grew up in a rural part of the county in Kilmoyler, near Bansha. In her 20s Maher enrolled in night classes in what was then the Crawford Municipal College of Art, studying drawing in the upstairs rooms which will host the exhibition of her work later this year. She enrolled full time in the undergraduate course from 1981 until 1985 marking the start of her career as an artist. Therefore, the resonances of this exhibition are not only thematic but also biographical and professional.

Vox Materia runs at the Source Arts Centre until the 5th May, 2018 and will move to the Crawford Art Gallery in September 2018.

The work in this exhibition has been made possible through funding from Tipperary County Council and Creative Ireland Program and was commissioned by Brendan Maher at the Source Arts Centre, Thurles. It is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue which includes essays by the curators and by artist and writer Dr Austin McQuinn.



Architecture/Sculpture: Work by Graduates of Cork Centre for Architectural Education


Preview: January 31, 18:00, Boole Library, UCC.
To be opened by Dr Sabine Kriebel, History of Art, UCC and Jason O’Shaughnessy, Cork Centre for Architectural Education.

PLUCK PROJECTS are pleased to announce their forthcoming show Architecture/Sculpture at the Boole Library, UCC. Working with Jason O’Shaughnessy and Dr Eve Olney along with their Master of Architecture (MArch) Graduates from Cork Centre for Architectural Education (UCC/CIT), Pluck will showcase a selection of models and constructions, originally made as part of larger designs for proposed buildings.  By removing them from their context, this show instead asks the viewer to consider the affinities between model and sculptural object.  Abstract forms manifest graduates’ inventive designs, implying the atmosphere and impression of a concept, rather than the more conventional tendency of directly illustrating plans.

The work from which these models are taken was conceived in response to the brief Athens_Endless [C]ity in 2015/2016, undertaken as part of the M.Arch program. This innovative course asks students to interrogate ideas about the built environment, creating responses that consider buildings as social spaces that are lived, impacting communities and introducing new concepts into society. From this theoretical framing, exciting prospects are envisaged that address social and political questions, challenging the ways in which we are directed to live by conventional spaces, and proposing alternatives that positively impact those who inhabit them. The graduates of this programme are given the tools needed to contribute to some of Ireland’s most celebrated architectural firms, with alumni working for some of the most renowned architectural practices in Ireland and abroad. Graduates from the Programme are multiple award winners, and have recently won the inaugural “RIAI Scott Tallon Walker Student Excellence Award” in Architecture, the “RIAI Thesis Writing Prize”, the IDI “Sustainable Design Award” for Architecture”, and the European Association for Architectural Education Prize (EAAE) Prize for Innovation in Architecture”.

In Architecture/Sculpture, Pluck celebrate the conceptual drive of the M.Arch programme, foregrounding the creativity of graduates, their ability to mediate between critical discourse and their attention to form and structure. With these intriguing objects; some that explicitly reference building and some that explore more abstract concepts of texture or shape;  an often neglected aspect of how our built environment is conceived comes to the fore. Architecture/Sculpture presents viewers with objects that act as architectural sketches, putting the ideas behind buildings on show.

With work by Gillian O’Keeffe, Chloe Kerins, Habban Ali, Claire Quinn, Stephen Hannon  and Danielle O’Sullivan, and Catriona Courtney.

With thanks to Crónán Ó Doibhlin, Head of Research Collections and Communications, Boole Library, University College Cork.

Gaolbreak: Angela Fulcher


January 28 – February 25, Mon-Fri 09:00 – 17:00.

Preview: January 27, 18.00. Catalogue launch and drinks reception.

In November 1923, prisoners held at Cork City Women’s Gaol launched an escape attempt. Tying together bed sheets to construct a rope ladder, the prisoners descended from the walls of the prison and made their bid for freedom. In Gaolbreak, Cork-based artist Angela Fulcher draws on this history to create a large scale fabric installation in the atrium of Cork City Hall. Knotted lengths of bedding fall from the building’s balconies, obliquely referencing this story of revolt in recognition of Ireland’s Decade of Commemorations. Fulcher brings to bear her fascination with the world of consumer-driven textile design, using contemporary items from low-cost suppliers like Michael Guineys and Penneys. Using sometimes kitsch, heavily patterned material, Fulcher looks beyond the garish to consider prospective connections between everyday devalued materials and their extraordinary potentials.

This project builds on Fulcher’s substantial body of work which has led to growing recognition of her practice. Paying close attention to the details and qualities of materials and surfaces, Fulcher explores the contexts and philosophies associated found materials. Her intelligent and subtle subversions touch on the histories and politics of manufacturing, fashion and obsolescence, the vagaries of taste and the realm of traditional feminine making. Fulcher takes a unique approach to sculpture. Her recent practice has involved creating large-scale, temporary textile sculptures that engage their environment: Sun Stopping at VISUAL, Carlow (2016) reflected on its site, creating striking interventions outside the gallery; Vermiculated Render Quoins to Ground Floor (2016) at the Engage Festival Bandon echoed the patterns on the Allin centre’s walls, translating them into textile sculptures of heavily patterned upholstery fabric and red pleather. Creating surprising, intelligent and witty works of art, Fulcher scrutinizes our everyday environment, picking out derided artefacts in order to consider their implications.

Curated by Pluck Projects

Catalogue with essay by Prof. Jessica Hemmings, Professor of Crafts & Vice-Prefekt of Research at the Academy of Design & Crafts (HDK), University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Funded by Cork City Council. Angela  Fulcher is a recipient of the Next Generation Bursary Award 2016, a special initiative of the Arts Council and the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme, in recognition of the role of artists in the events of 1916.