Weekly round-up: 22 August 2011

Heritage Week 2011

It’s Heritage Week! There are special events happening at museums & cultural sites across the country — you can download a free iPhone app to keep track of them all, and plan outings until the 28th…

Speaking of iPhone apps.. Irish developer Justin McKeown asked me to have a look at his ArtWorker app, designed to help visual artists in valuing their work, time spent delivering workshops and other services, etc. It’s pretty nifty all right, especially the ability to help folks calculate a daily rate/hourly rate. I think the calculation of artwork value is a little fuzzier (as you’re meant to input your ‘level of recognition’, which can be pretty hard to assess, and has an important impact on price), but no doubt further improvements & refinements will be implemented. Worth a look/download if you’re figuring out how to value your work or time! I’m sure Justin would appreciate any feedback from artists on what other features they’d like to see..

Last week the  impressive programme for the upcoming Belfast Festival was also launched… I’d love to see Cuban ballet sensation Carlos Acosta, the Shipwrecked theatre piece (based on the wreck of the Spanish Armada), and the intriguing-sounding Woyzeck on the Highveld (a collaboration between artist William Kentridge and the Handspring Puppet Company, famed for their London-based War Horse production). The hubs will no doubt make a beeline for Jan Garbarek & the Hilliard Ensemble (one of his favourite pairings). The Festival takes place 13-20th October but many of these events will undoubtedly sell out quickly!

The festivals are still coming thick and fast… this upcoming weekend sees the grassroots effort the Kilmainham Arts Festival, with a great range of music, visual arts, and literaryactivities in the Dublin 8 area on Saturday and Sunday. Here’s the full programme!

Boardmatch.ie has just relaunched its website… if you’ve an interest in joining the board of a nonprofit arts & cultural organisation, it’s a good place to start…

In news that’s received a mixed response (given the impending rise in energy charges), Bord Gáis has struck a naming/sponsorship deal with the Grand Canal Theatre. At least it will be an easy walk from their new premises on Warrington Place

UCD, TCD and the NLI have announced joint plans to develop new preservation & storage spaces to address their collection challenges, sparked by a $50k grant from the Andrew Mellon Foundation. As a frequent user of all these collections I hope the government will see fit to prioritise this initiative, which is absolutely essential for the support of research and public accessibility of these marvellous resources.

Uh oh… the former owners of Bewley’s on Westmoreland Street are in trouble over damage to the historic Joshua Clarke windows (father of Harry) located in the former cafe. It’s terribly sad to see that space still shuttered… I remember many a rainy afternoon ensconced in its gloomy interior when I first moved to Dublin!

Reports of The Gloaming (Irish trad supergroup of Thomas Bartlett, Dennis Cahill, Martin Hayes, Iarla Ó Lionaird & Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh) are, well, glowing… following their concert last Saturday at the National Concert Hall is a range of dates across the country…  you’d be nuts to miss it if they’re coming to your area!

News that BBC4’s schedule and budget will be pared back came as unhappy news to Irish viewers lucky enough to access its fantastic arts programming… there’s nothing on TV like it! Since we don’t pay the license fee it’s difficult to have a direct impact, but you can still sign one of the online petitions to protect its place in the broadcasting schedule.

Missed last night’s live stream of Britten’s opera ‘The Turn of the Screw’ direct from Glyndebourne? By all accounts it was smashing, and still available to view from the Guardian’s website until 12 September.

A lovely article on the United Arts Club on Upper Fitzwilliam Street is in the Irish Times… sounds like a club I’d love to belong to (and membership rates are quite reasonable) — looks like quite a step up from the UCD Faculty Club! 🙂

Finally, CAO offers to first year students have gone out today following release of Leaving Cert results. The annual news rush of stories about subject points gains & declines(arts/business down, science/tech/ag up), the inequities of the Leaving Cert, and what lies ahead for this year’s new student crop has already begun… I’ve already seen a few newbies (and often parents) wandering around the soon-to-be-busy halls of Belfield, and although I won’t be teaching next year, I wish all of them the very best start to their university career!