Deep States | Group Exhibition at Nun’s Island Theatre, Galway


Date(s) - 31/07/2020 - 08/08/2020
12:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Nun's Island Theatre





TULCA Festival of Visual Arts, Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture and Fire Station Artists Studios are delighted to announce the reopening of Deep States.

Deep States
Curated by Helen Carey
Nun’s Island Theatre, Galway
31 July – 8 August 2020

Dominic Thorpe (Ireland)
Veronika Merklein (Austria & Germany)
Andrej Mircev (Croatia)
Nikoleta Markovic (born in Yugoslavia)
Eunseo Yi (Republic of Korea)

The inaugural exhibition of the UnSelfing Programme, Deep States, commissioned by Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture, opened on Friday 6th March at 6pm at Nun’s Island Theatre, with a schedule of performances planned to take place throughout the exhibition run.

After one week, Deep States was closed because of Covid-19 and the Irish lockdown – since Deep States sought to explore the complex states of freedom and responsibility, there was something of a pathetic fallacy in this enforced sleeping beauty in a darkened Nuns’ Island Theatre.

Where the exhibition proposed the unconscious and conscious human responses as battlefields for dominance, it was separated from its audience and its artists from their performances: the outcome confuses, the battle never ends, the struggle begins again. And this, after all, is the human experience. Artists Dominic Thorpe, Veronika Merklein and Red People began their installations and planned their performances to complete the audience’s acquaintance with their work. Because of the changed world and conditions that now pertain, the artists cannot perform – this too seems to work with the world’s suspension because of the virus, however heart breaking for the artists… maybe Deep States will find resolution or maybe it is destined to never finish…

With the stretching of Deep States into the light as Nun’s Island opens its doors after the lockdown for one week, a most human experience has played out while the exhibition slept in a deep state.

Helen Carey


Dominic Thorpe addresses sentient information, the senses and the fault lines between what is locked in, what is manifest and what is manipulated. Through video, mixed media, photography and performance, Thorpe explores the matrix between human endurance and the senses, exploring power and vulnerability.

Veronika Merklein suggests the information presented reveals a narrative whose truth is embedded in social contexts and power relations. Response to the photographic works and video works is a function of complex, highly political and vulnerable responses forming the controlled matrix of power relations in society. Merklein’s performance reaches deeply into the audience’s humanity.

Red People – Andrej Mircev, Nikoleta Markovic and Eunseo Yi – trace the scars of boundaries and limits, of ‘spectres and leftovers’ becoming the props of new desire and hope. As the next element in their installation of the text of Everything Divided as a wall of books, their installation for Nuns’ Island draws on the theatrical setting as well as the West of Ireland in terms of memory, absence, and archaeology.

More information on the artists and exhibition can be found here.

Deep States – Reopening dates
Dates: 31 July – 8 August 2020 (closed Sunday 2 August)
Times: 12:00 – 17:00
Venue: Nun’s Island Theatre, Galway (map)

UnSelfing Programme
TULCA Festival of Visual Arts and Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture present: UnSelfing; a programme of exhibitions, performances and encounters with visual art taking place in Galway and across Ireland throughout the coming months.

The programme takes as its theme Irish-born writer and philosopher Iris Murdoch’s concept of ‘UnSelfing’; the idea that in order to find truth, it is necessary to seek outside of one’s self; to be attentive to the world, to be curious about the people, places and ideas that surround us.

Further announcements on the rescheduled UnSelfing Programme of exhibitions and events will be listed on our website in the coming weeks.

Image detail: Dominic Thorpe, ‘Perpetrator trauma disappears like a stone in the throat’, drawings and mixed media, dimensions variable, 2020. Credit: Mary McGraw / TULCA Festival of Visual Arts


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