Everyone needs some creative inspiration from time to time. Why not get it on Irish soil at the Kilkenny Arts Festival? Here are our top picks from the ten day festival.

 

Nine Lives: Architecture

Curator Emmet Scanlon will present an exhibition that showcases how Irish architects are designing and using space in the 21st century. The Irish architects chosen are representing Ireland in three international architecture festivals this year.

The exhibition focuses on the ‘life stories’ of nine rooms. The story of each room is told by how each room has developed through occupation and use and how architectural design influenced this development. Snap shots of each room’s story are presented beside each other using photographs and drawings.

This is a really insightful look at how design not only helps bring rooms back to life but can prolong and invigorate empty spaces with ideas that are designed to inspire.

Nine Lives runs from the 8th August to the 27th September, 10am (11 am on Sundays) – 5.30 pm and 4 pm on Friday and Saturday 14th and 15th August in the National Craft Gallery.

 

Song of the Sea: Character design workshop

We all adored this beautiful and touching animated film. Song of the Sea resident animator at Cartoon Saloon, Rory, leads this character based design workshop throughout the festival. Rory will show you how to use simple shapes to create complex characters.

Cartoon Saloon has carved itself a special place within the national and international animation industry. It currently has two TV programmes on RTE and has been nominated for an Oscar twice. Firstly for The Secret of Kells and secondly for Song of the Sea. The workshop is on in the Muniments Room in Kilkenny Castle.

Or pop along to Song of the Sea: The Exhibition, the free multimedia exhibition of prints, drawings, storyboards and animation at The Butler Gallery. It provides a sneak peek inside Cartoon Salon’s creation process.

 

Mick O’Dea: Drawings

Mick O’Dea is the visual artist in residence for the 2015 Festival. O’Dea has been tasked with capturing the essence of the festival by live sketching the events and performances as they happen. His pen will capture the sights, sounds and atmosphere of the festival.

O’Dea’s studio is located in Kilkenny’s historic James Stephens Barracks, home of the 3rd Infantry Battalion and just a few minutes’ walk from the venues. Festival-goers are invited to drop in and watch the artist at work. This very much captures the essence of the festival. As the paintings and sketches are completed they will be displayed in a range of venues throughout the city.

 

Architects of Air: Mirazozo

This is the third year running that the Architects of Air have visited the Kilkenny Arts Festival with their luminarium. They have created another one on the castle grounds this year. The luminarium is a giant light filled inflatable sculpture filled with tunnels, chambers and domes designed to be explored and to inspire young minds. This is a cool installation to catch over the festival and is a steal at five euros.

 

Meta-Perceptual Helmets

Dive into the world of meta-perception. This is a world where you don a helmet and enter into a different world. You can see the world from the point of view of a hammer head shark, with its hyper stereo vision or experience the exceptional peripheral vision of a horse. Did you know chameleons can look backward and forward at the same time?

Artists Anne Cleary and Denis Connolly have made a series of wearable head gear called ‘Meta-Perceptual Helmets’ that enable the wearer to view the world exactly as a hammerhead shark, a horse or a chameleon does. You can find the helmets at Rothe House every day during the festival. This cutting-edge exhibition, helps make us see the world with new eyes.

Plan your trip to The Kilkenny Arts Festival on www.kilkennyarts.ie

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