2022 Arts and Human Rights Festival- The State of the Art

Exhibition Dates: 20th Sep - 28th Oct 2022
Artist: Mary Moynihan & Amna Wayalat

Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival

14-23 October 2022

In Solidarity – A Celebration of Human Rights

 State of the Art: Transformative Memories in Political Violence

Visual Art, Photography and Poetry Exhibition

dlr Mill Theatre Gallery, Dundrum

11am-4pm, Tuesday to Saturday, 13 September – 28 October, 2022

The State of the Art: Transformative Memories in Political Violence exhibition is hosted at The Chocolate Factory, Dublin 1, and Gallery Space, dlr Mill Theatre Dundrum for the 2022 Arts and Human Rights Festival presented by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and Front Line Defenders with a range of partners.  The chapter of the exhibition hosted at the dlr Mill Theatre gallery features the work of writer and artist Mary Moynihan and visual artist Amna Walayat responding creatively to themes of freedom, change, transformation, power and control.

In a series of visual art poetic visions consisting of photography and poetry created under the title of The Feeling Soul: Paradise Lost and Found, artist Mary Moynihan explores the internal journey of a person experiencing loss and crisis and the possibility of finding a way through.  Reflecting on ‘A Broken Heart, Imperfections, Finding My Way, Dreamscape and Freedom’ the artist explores ways to hold on to the courage to carry on and let ourselves shine.

 The work of visual artist Amna Walayat  is informed by Michel Foucault’s[1] ideas on power and Edward Said’s[2] work on Orientalism.  Using the medium of traditional and neo-Indo-Persian miniature painting and the language of symbolism, Amna’s work expresses her hybrid cultural experiences with artworks on display created under the titles of Migration and In the Name of Shame. The artist says ‘being female, Asian, and Muslim, and a migrant, mother and artist, these are all the strands that are personal but also provide me  with the opportunity to connect with global issues in general. My paintings are silent protests or performances against violence experienced by women and children, particularly in various cultural contexts’.

Presented by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality, Ulster University, the Transformative Memory International Network, the Smashing Times Arts and Human Rights Network, University of British Columbia, Healing Through Remembering, Conflict Textiles, Justice and Reconciliation Project, Uganda and National Museums NI. Supported by The Arts Council.

[1] Michel Foucault (1926-1984) was a French philosopher and historian.

[1] Edward Said (1935-2003) was a Palestinian American academic, political activist and literary critic.

 Mary Moynihan

Artist:              Mary Moynihan

Artworks:        The Feeling Soul: Paradise Lost and Found

  1. A Broken Heart –poetry and photography by Mary Moynihan. 60 x 42cm
  2. Imperfections – poetry and photography by Mary Moynihan. 60 x 42cm
  3. Finding My Way – poetry and photography by Mary Moynihan. 60 x 42cm
  4. Dreamscape – poetry and photography by Mary Moynihan. 60 x 42cm
  5. Freedom – poetry and photography by Mary Moynihan. 60 x 42cm
  6. Totality of the Soul poetry artwork by Mary Moynihan.42 x 60cm

 

Mary Moynihan, Artist Statement on The Feeling Soul: Paradise Lost and Found

A Broken Heart, Imperfections, Finding My Way, Dreamscape, Freedom

‘If you’re always trying to be normal, you’ll never know how amazing you can be’  Maya Angelou

The number five can signify freedom, change and possibility. In these five visual art poetic visions consisting of photography and poetry created under the title of The Feeling Soul: Paradise Lost and Found, I am exploring the internal journey of a person experiencing loss and crisis and the possibility of finding a way through.  A sixth artwork is the poem Totality of the Soul. Many of us fall on our journey through life. We fall and pick ourselves up. How do we hold on to the courage and madness to carry on and let ourselves shine?

Art is creativity, imagination, love, courage, freedom. Creativity requires vulnerability, letting ourselves fall apart and pulling ourselves back together again.  Without art, the world would lack colour. In art we can be bold, rebellious and curious. Art gives us a sideways glance at the unknown, a way to rebel against what is normal. There is poetry and beauty all around us and in us, it is what we dream.

In relation to equality, human rights and diversity, a key principle is to ensure that all people are treated equally and fairly with dignity and respect.  This journey begins with a sense of love and care for one’s self and then we can move out into the world to share that love and respect with others.

Mary Moynihan – Artist Biography

 Mary Moynihan, (she/her), MA, is an award-winning writer, director, theatre and film-maker, an interdisciplinary artist and one of Ireland’s most innovative arts and human rights artists creating work to promote the arts, human rights, climate justice, gender equality, diversity and peace.

Mary is Artistic Director of Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and works collaboratively with artists and over 50 organisations across Ireland, Northern Ireland, Europe and internationally, using the arts to promote rights and values for all.   Company patrons of Smashing Times are Sabina Coyne Higgins, Senator Joan Freeman, founder of Pieta House, Ger Ryan, actor and Tim Pat Coogan, writer and historian. Founding patrons were writers Maeve Binchy and Brian Friel.

Mary’s work has won a number of awards including the Allianz Business to Arts Awards, a GSK Ireland Impact Award, a Dublin Bus Community Spirit Award, a National Lottery Good Cause Award, the international #ArtsAgainstCovid award, an Arts Council Project Award and an Arts Council Agility Award.

Mary is Artistic Curator for the annual Dublin Arts and Human Rights festival implemented by Smashing Times and Front Line Defenders in partnership with Amnesty International, Fighting Words, ICCL,  NWCI, Irish Modern Dance Theatre, Trócaire and Poetry Ireland, funded by The Arts Council. The aim of the festival is to showcase and highlight the extraordinary work of human rights defenders in Ireland and around the world, past and present, and the role of the arts and artists in promoting human rights today.

Mary’s artistic practice encompasses theatre, film, literature, poetry, and curatorship. Mary’s work focuses on primal, visceral and intuitive responses to vulnerability and conflict and an exploration of self and the other. Her work explores an interconnectedness of the body, voice and imagination, revealing the inner life through physical and spiritual energies and intuitive engagements. Mary has a focus on using historical memory in her artistic practice as inspiration for the creation of original artworks across a range of mediums, remembering stories of ordinary yet powerful people from history and today who stood up for the rights of others.

 As a playwright, Mary’s work includes the highly acclaimed The Woman is Present: Women’s Stories of WWII co-written with Paul Kennedy, Fiona Thompson and Féilim James;  A Beauty that will Pass; Constance and Her Friends – selected by President Michael D. Higgins for performance at Áras an Uachtaráin for Culture Night 2016;  In One Breath from the award-winning Testimonies (co-written with Paul Kennedy); and Shadow of My Soul, May Our Faces Haunt You and Silent Screams.

 Mary’s film work includes the hour-long documentary Stories from the Shadows, the short film Tell Them Our Names, inspired by women’s stories of WWII and selected for the London Eye International Film Festival and Kerry Film Festival, the creative documentary Women in an Equal Europe and the short film Courageous Women inspired by powerful women’s stories from the 1916 to 1923 decade of commemorations period in Irish history.

Amna Walayat

 Artist:              Amna Walayat

Artworks:        Migration Series

  1. Fall-Nest series (2018), Mixed media oil on paper, 12 x 18 inches
  2. Fall-Nest series (2018), Mixed media on paper, 12 x 18 inches
  3. Slave (2020), Mixed Media on Paper, 12 x 18 inches
  4. Slave Ship (2020), Mixed Media on Paper, 12 x 18 inches

Artworks: In the Name of Shame Self-Portrait (Lotus) Series

  1. Self Portrait – Shame Series # 1 (2021), Neem Rung/ half tone and Gouache on wasli, 8 x 12 inches
  2. Self Portrait – Shame Series # 2 (2021), Neem Rung/half tone and Gouache on wasli, 8 x 12 inches
  3. Self Portrait – In the Name of Shame Lotus Series. Neem Rung/ half tone and Gouache on wasli.
  4. Self Portrait – Shame Series # 3 (2021), Neem Rung/ half tone, tea wash and Gouache on wasli, 8 x 12 inches
  5. Self Portrait – Shame Series # 5 (2021), Neem Rung/ half tone and Gouache on wasli, 8 x 12 inches
  6. Self Portrait – Shame Series # 4 (2021), Neem Rung/ half tone and Gouache on wasli, 8 x 12 inches

 

Amna Walayat, Visual Artist  Artist Statement

 Power and control are  core themes that I aim to address in my work. These themed  can be found in all elements of life on this planet,  amongst humans, animals, and even in the botanical world. Power struggles, particularly between genders, and in politics, race and slavery inspire me to address  related issue. My work is informed by Michel Foucault’s[3] ideas on power and Edward Said’s[4] work on Orientalism that I studied during my MA in University College Cork and my final dissertation was based on those ideas.

Using the medium of traditional and neo-Indo-Persian miniature painting and the language of symbolism, my work expresses my hybrid cultural experiences. Being female, Asian, and Muslim, and a migrant, mother and artist, these are all the strands that are personal but also provide me  with the opportunity to connect with global issues in general.  Violence against women and children, particularly in various cultural contexts,  are the themes I am continuously addressing in my work.  Violence against women and children in Mother and Baby homes in Ireland resonates with me and with the theme of international human rights. Working as an artist activist my paintings are silent protests or performances against this violence.

Amna Walayat – Artist Biography

Amna Walayat is a Cork-based Pakistani-born emerging mixed media visual artist. Her current practice is based on traditional and neo-Indo-Persian Miniature painting, expressing her hybrid cultural experiences and her position as migrant artist.  Recently, she mounted her first solo exhibition as a part of the Cork mid-summer festival under Pluck Project (2022). Her work was exhibited in the yearlong exhibition The Narrow Gate of Here and Now at IMMA (2021-2022), 191 RHA (2021), Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival in Chester Beatty and Mill Theatre (15-24 October 2021) and with a  two-person show at LHQ (March 2021).

She is interested in the promotion of South Asian Art and Culture in Ireland and Europe. She has worked as Creative Producer in Residence with Cork County Council for her community-based project ‘South Asia Community Museum in Ireland’.

Amna has an MA in Modern and Contemporary Art History Theory and Criticism from UCC, and an MA in Fine Arts from Punjab University, Lahore. She has worked as Programme Organiser with the Pakistan National Council of Arts and as a Curator with Alhambra Arts Council (2001-07). She has  worked with Cultural Action Europe as a MENA Cultural Agent for advising on policies (2021).  She is a member of Sample-Studios, Backwater Artists, Art Nomads, Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and Visual Artists Ireland, and is a recent recipient of The Arts Council Ireland’s Next Generation Award and Project Arts Centre Bursary Award.

 

 

 

“In a world where human rights continue to be under attack, Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival 2021 sets out to celebrate the people who have stood up for them around the world and throughout history, and highlight the role artists can play in promoting a more just society.”  – Kevin Courtney, Irish Times

 Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival 2022

Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and Front Line Defenders, and a range of partners, present the fourth annual, international Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival from the 14 to 23 October 2022 featuring exciting and innovative events which promote equality, human rights and diversity through the arts. The aim of the festival is to showcase and highlight the extraordinary work of human rights defenders in Ireland and around the world, past and present, and the role of the arts and artists in promoting human rights today. The theme of the 2022 festival is ‘In Solidarity: A Celebration of Human Rights’, celebrating community connections and a world where all people are treated equal with dignity and respect.  The artistic curator for the festival is Mary Moynihan, Artistic Director, Smashing Times and the human rights curator is Laura O’Leary, International Events and Promotions Coordinator, Front Line Defenders. The festival is a hybrid programme delivered over 10 days and hosts an exciting blend of over 80 events happening in-person and online, featuring Irish and and international artists and guest speakers, reaching audiences locally, nationally, and internationally. There will be something for everyone interested in the arts for equality, human rights and diversity.

Festival Partners: The Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival is an annual, international festival organised by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and Front Line Defenders, a Dublin based international organisation working to improve the security and protection of human rights defenders at risk, in partnership with Amnesty International, Fighting Words, Irish Council for Civil Liberties, National Women’s Council of Ireland, Trócaire, Poetry Ireland, and Irish PEN. Creative partners include Irish Modern Dance Theatre, dlr Mill Theatre Dundrum, Art Nomads, Rathfarnham Castle, Rua Red South Dublin Arts Centre; and UNESCO Dublin City of Literature. Partners for the flagship event, the State of the Art: Transformative Memories in Political Violence exhibition, are Smashing Times, Ulster University, the Transformative Memory International Network, the Smashing Times Arts and Human Rights Network, University of British Columbia, Healing Through Remembering, Conflict Textiles, Justice and Reconciliation Project, Uganda and National Museums NI.

Festival Supporters: The annual Arts and Human Rights festival is supported by the Arts Council of Ireland; Erasmus+; Europe for Citizens; Foras na Gaeilge; Concern; Irish Aid WorldWise Global Schools; Reconciliation Fund, Department of Foreign Affairs; Dublin Northwest Partnership; HSE National Lottery Funding; Clár Innovation Measure, Department of Rural and Community Development; Aviva Stadium Grant Scheme; NEIC Initiative; Irish Research Council New Foundations; Rethink Ireland; Dormant Accounts Pobal Kickstart fund; Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Ireland; Mental Health Ireland; Creative Europe and the European Commission.

www.smashingtimes.ie

 

 

 

[1] Michel Foucault (1926-1984) was a French philosopher and historian.

[2] Edward Said (1935-2003) was a Palestinian American academic, political activist and literary critic.

[3] Michel Foucault (1926-1984) was a French philosopher and historian.

[4] Edward Said (1935-2003) was a Palestinian American academic, political activist and literary critic.

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