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Official Opening of Willie Doherty’s Loose Ends exhibition at RCC Letterkenny


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The Official Opening of Loose Ends a major new art project by the world renowned Derry/Donegal artist Willie Doherty that explores the legacy of the Easter Rising was held at the Regional Cultural Centre Letterkenny on Saturday evening last, July 9th. Doherty has produced a new large-scale two screen video installation made in locations on Gola Island, County Donegal and Moore Street, Dublin with connections to the Rising. The video combines images featuring hypnotic slow and extended zoom that brings the viewer close to the surface of existing architectural structures, while a voiceover (voiced by renowned Irish actor and Donegal native Sean McGinley) explores the relationship between the present and our memories of the past. Loose Ends is accompanied by a Drop-In, Hands-On, Art-Room where families and children can find out more about the exhibition and make their own artworks inspired by the show. The  launch was a gala occasion attended by over 200 people from all over Ireland. Speeches by Shaun Hannigan, Regional Cultural Centre, Paul Brown Earagail Arts Festival, Orlaith McBride, Director, Arts Council and Cllr. Terence Slowey, Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council were held in the RCC Auditorium before the doors of the gallery were opened and people were able to see the installation for the first time.


Hands on event


The audience response was universally positive. Orlaith McBride tweeted afterwards ‘Opened this exhibition @ Cultural Centre on Saturday evening. It's superb’. Michael O'Reilly of the Ireland 2016 Office described it as ‘Willie Doherty's intense meditation on time and place’. According to Karen Downey of The Arts Council ‘the quality of the work, the standard of exhibition installation, the context of ART: 2016 and Ireland 2016, as well as a great local arts festival, are a powerful set of ingredients which amount to the realization of real vision, and it is a pleasure to be associated with it.’ Sue MacDiarmid the exhibition designer wrote ‘Personally, I think the Loose Ends is a great show and I really enjoyed working on the installation and planning. I also really loved the educational exhibition’. Cllr. Terence Slowey thanked all the partners in the project, ‘the Nerve Centre Derry who produced the video and coordinated the installation, the Earagail Arts Festival which is celebrating its 28th year and is a vital part of the cultural landscape in Donegal and the Kerlin Gallery Dublin and Matt’s Gallery London that are presenting the exhibition later this year and early in 2017. I would like to congratulate everyone who has worked tirelessly to create this magnificent exhibition here in Donegal, particularly the RCC Director Shaun Hannigan whose vision was the starting point for this project, and all the team involved.’. Loose Ends by Willie Doherty continues at the RCC Letterkenny until September 24th, it is open 11am to 5pm Tuesday to Friday and 1pm to 5pm Saturdays, admission is free and everyone is welcome.


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