Monday, 7 July 2014

At times like these men were wishing they were all kinds of insects - The MAC Belfast

The starting point for Graham Gingles WW1 commemorative project was the simple act of the MAC gifting a decorative brass box to the artist, the same brass box sent by Princess Mary to members of the British, Colonial and Indian Armed Forces at Christmas in 1914.

Graham has dramatically scaled up his intimate and enigmatic wall-hanging sculptures, usually enclosed in meticulously crafted wood and glass boxes, in order to occupy the entirety of the Sunken Gallery at the MAC, where the walls of the gallery become the form of enclosure. The work deals with themes of memory and loss and is both theatrical and sculptural, presenting the viewer with a totally immersive experience. Dark and compelling, this piece invites the viewer to come close and examine the intricacies of the various compartments and corridors within this room.

The title of the work is taken from the War Diaries of Robert McGookin from Larne, Northern Ireland who spoke of the men’s wish whilst under shell fire to become like insects like a worm burrowing into the trenches.

For more information on this commission, and other related projects in the UK, please see 14-18 NOW.

The exhibition runs at the MAC Belfast until 17 August 2014

Saturday, 5 July 2014

Competition: Win £1000 for your artistic skills at #BelFest

The Project

Love treasure hunts?  Like surprises? We’re leaving lots of artworks around Belfast City Centre and other areas for you to find.  Follow our clues on social media and see if you can spot a prize. Don’t forget to let us know that you’ve found it via Facebook or Twitter. Be creative with your thank you for a chance to win a bigger prize.We will also be leaving a piano for you to play at various locations including Culture Night, so bring your best music, your fancy fingers and your toe tapping rhythms. Why? Because we believe in the power of art and we want to embrace you with music and give back some love.Follow #BelFest for clues

What we need

We are sending out 200,000 postcards to advertise the Free Festival Friday campaign. In addition we will need labels, transfers and a design to brand the piano.

Artist brief

Can you come up with an artistic design to encourage people to engage with the project? We’re thinking fun, quirky, energetic, musical and embracing.We want everyone to get involved in the art treasure hunt - adults, kids, young people, parents and older people. Can you create a design that will encourage all of them to take part?   We want the piano to be engaging – can you make your design so enticing that members of the public will be compelled to sit down and play?Your design will also be applied to the overall branding online and on social media channels.


You can supply your artwork in any visual medium preferably A3 size. Our designers will work with the winning artist reproduce the image as best they can for different formats.    
Brief Terms and Conditions

To enter the competition, your design must meet the following brief criteria - The design must be family friendly e.g. no nudity, swearing or adult themes.The design must be submitted in an appropriate format.Prize will be £1000. The winning design will be used as part of the Free Festival Friday campaign across the print, online and social media channels.Artist must be available to take part in a photo call on Friday 5th September and to accept their prize.Any submissions made by artists for the Free Festival Friday Prize, must be open to their work being accessible and promoted as part of the #FFF14 campaign and for Ulster Bank Belfast Festival at Queen’s in the future, and utilised for social media and further promotions.

Friday, 4 July 2014

Culture Babies launched

Young at Art is have announced the launch of CULTURE BABIES, a new creative playgroup for under 4's this Summer.

Based in CastleCourt shopping centre this event is FREE for parents of children and groups from 0-4 years to attend. It will be jam-packed with fun activities changing every week, and led by experienced artists to specially cater to very young children.

Sessions include; baby yoga, dance, drama, messy play, music and much, much more. The range of interactive and creative experiences of Culture Babies supports young children’s creative expression, enabling them to try new things, and giving them the freedom to get as messy and as creative as they want, in a safe, fun and welcoming environment.

The activities behind Culture Babies will help to build very young children’s self-confidence, interpersonal and technical skills as well as offering and a wonderful way to bond with your child.

The group are planning to meet every Thursday morning between 10am - 12 noon from 10th July until provisionally September.


10th July: Make Your Own Fort

17th July: Make an Aquarium

24th July: Playing with Plasticine

31st July: Baby Yoga

7th August: Make Your Own Musical Instrument

14th August: Messy Painting

21st August: Wall Collage

28th August: Baby Dance Session

11th September: Baby Drama Session

This is a FREE, drop-in group with no booking necessary.