Cloudlands Tour: Reflections, images, panel discussion video
The Cloudlands National Tour by Helium Arts visited arts venues and hospitals across Ireland from March to June 2016, inviting audiences into the creative lives of teenagers in hospital.
The artworks were developed during Helium’s Cloudlands project. Artist Rachel Tynan worked with teenagers in Temple Street Children’s University Hospital to develop the ‘Titans’, an installation of beautiful wooden figures. As the figures are moved into different combinations, they reveal sound recordings of the teenagers’ stories, from a Star Lady who heals to a transforming cheeky Faun. ‘Radio/Silence’ is an interactive radio game developed by artist Eszter Némethi and teenagers in Cork University Hospital that alters the hospital environment for the listener.
The Cloudlands National Tour was funded by an Arts Council of Ireland Touring and Dissemination of Work Award.
‘The Cloudlands Tour highlights the inspired work that can emerge when teenagers collaborate with an artist in hospital. The essence of the Cloudlands project is to provide teens in hospital with a voice and a place to be away from their illness and medical routines, a place where they can be a teenager.’ – Helene Hugel, Artistic Director, Helium Arts
Artist Aideen Barry launched the Cloudlands Tour at Galway Arts Centre on 4th March and there was a fantastic turnout on opening night. As part of the tour’s outreach programme, ‘Radio/Silence’ engaged the teenage population at University Hospital Galway hosted by Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust.
Check out artist Eszter Némethi’s interview with Flirt FM in Galway!
‘We are struck by the ingenuity of this art project which draws from youth culture, uses technology young people are comfortable with and, significantly, can be accessed by the teenager in the bed, reflecting the playfulness and innovation that is Cloudlands.’ – Mary Grehan, WHAT
Mary Grehan, Arts Director of the Waterford Healing Arts Trust (WHAT), launched Cloudlands in Garter Lane Arts Centre on 31st March. We were delighted to bring ‘Radio/Silence’ to teenagers at University Hospital Waterford with thanks to WHAT. Above, Claire Meaney from WHAT dials up ‘Radio/Silence’ and tries her hand at saving the world!
Our first Cloudlands panel discussion took place on the opening night in Cork on 22nd April at The Atrium, Cork City Hall. Chaired by Annette Moloney, Cardiologist Dr. Carl Vaughan (Mercy University Hospital) and Play Specialist Anne Olney from CUH joined artists Eszter and Rachel. The exhibition was launched by Jean Brennan, Cork City Arts Officer. Great photos by Jed Niezgoda on the night!
Teenagers took part in ‘Radio/Silence’ at Cork University Hospital hosted by CUH Arts Committee. CUH Radio also broadcast the game live during the Cork stop.
The final stop on the tour brought Cloudlands to ArtBox Gallery, Dublin and to teenagers at Tallaght Hospital in May, hosted by the National Centre for Arts and Health.
Fionn Davenport from RTE’s Inside Culture visited the exhibition and interviewed Dr. Emma Curtis and artists Rachel Tynan and Eszter Nemethi about the exhibition, the Cloudlands project and the value of the arts for young people in hospital. Check it out here!
The panel discussion at The LAB Gallery Dublin on 19th May explored the very rich process which the artists engaged in with patients and brought together the views of artists and medical practitioners on the value of the arts in healthcare contexts. Chaired by Annette Moloney, the panel included Cloudlands artists Rachel Tynan and Eszter Némethi, Dr Emma Curtis (Medical Director, National Paediatric Hospital Development Board), Marie Brett (artist) and Aideen Barry (artist).
THE PAPERS, THE PAPERS!
Check out this wonderful feature article and overview of the tour by Sylvia Thompson in The Irish Times here. Eoin English focused on the Cork stop and the project at CUH for this piece in The Irish Examiner.