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On Culture Night, Friday 17th September, the Arts Department of Wexford County Council and Wexford Arts Centre are pleased to present Whatever, the bi-annual Arts Ability initiative in CUMAS, New Ross. Launched online earlier this year, Whatever comprises an exhibition of selected works, an original artist book, and documentary videos. The documentaries, produced by filmmaker Terence White, explore the studio processes of a number of the artists involved in the programme highlighting techniques and interests that are pertinent to them.
Since 2003, the Arts Ability Programme has supported hundreds of artists by providing space, materials, tuition and facilitators in centres and homes throughout the South-East. Well over forty artists are taking part in Whatever, which has opened up a variety of ways that have sought to transcend any restrictions imposed by COVID-19. Presented bi-annually, Artist Dominic Thorpe was Guest Curator in 2017 and Catherine Marshall in 2019.
Speaking about Whatever, Guest Curator Jenny Haughton said: ‘This year, the aim is to explore the diversity of approaches to creative production. Whether through writing, singing, painting or sewing, Whatever offers a collective contribution to understanding creative experience. Referencing the writer and activist Irit Rogoff, she suggests that Whatever is ‘being such as it actually matters’ to you; this has formed the basis for artists and facilitators, and has resulted in some intriguing and authentic contributions.
The Arts Ability programme has expanded in recent years and is a partnership between the Arts Department of Wexford County Council, the HSE Disability and Mental Health Services and Wexford Mental Health Association through its Music Exploration Programme. Partner venues include: Killagoley Training & Activation Centre (KTAC, Enniscorthy), County Wexford Community Workshop, (CUMAS, New Ross), Wexford Residential and Intellectual Services (WRIDS, Enniscorthy) as well as care and residential homes countywide. It is a person-centered, participation focused initiative, the primary goal of which is to provide access to high quality art experiences based on meaningful engagement between participant artists and professional artists.
Whatever was curated by Jenny Haughton working in collaboration with the artists, and lead artists’ facilitators Declan Kennedy, Oonagh Latchford, Joe Brennan, Emily Redmond and John Busher. The exhibition will be on view in CUMAS until Friday 24 September and opening hours are Monday-Friday from 10am-3pm.
For further information please contact Catherine Bowe, Wexford Arts Centre, Cornmarket, Wexford at firstname.lastname@example.org or the Arts Department, Wexford County Council, Carricklawn, Wexford at email@example.com