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The Tulca Festival of Visual Art takes place in Galway every November. It consists of two weeks of contemporary art exhibited in lots of venues throughout the city, from galleries to public buildings. You can find exhibits in UHG, and in the James Mitchell Geology Museum, as well as in more well-known gallery spaces around town like the Galway Arts Centre, Nuns’ Island Theatre and more. The old Connacht Tribune print works on Market Street is the main gallery of the festival and was where the opening of the exhibition was held. Last Friday I braved the cold, wind and rain to attend it, with the intention of sketching what I saw and soaking up the atmosphere.
The exhibition is called Seachange, and aims to draw attention to climate change – and the concomitant disappearance of islands – using the mythological island of Hy-Brasil as a motif. So the exhibits all refer in some way to the sea or to the fragility of our existence on Earth. I had never heard of Hy-Brasil before Friday, but many people more learned than I know all about it. It’s a sort of make-believe, sunken island off the south-west coast of Ireland but if I say any more than that I’ll be out of my depth, so to speak.
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