From February to April 2022 the RFR team worked with a group of LGBTQ+ teenagers and young adults from the midlands, part of Youth Work Ireland Midlands. Over a number of weeks, they took part in a series of site visits, talks, and workshops, learning about local queer history and generating artistic responses. To accompany the tours and talks, RFR designed and facilitated creative workshops, enabling the participants to fully engage with and respond to these histories as well as their own expressions of identity. The workshops applied methods designed for the Games for Artists and Non-Artists (GFANA) programme.
The group was guided through a design process by Hannah Tiernan creating alternative Pride Banners. These banners were exhibited in Offaly County Council in April 2022 and in the Dublin LGBTQ+ Pride Hub in June 2022 alongside the banners designed by Out South Central LGBT+.
The work created with this group will tour Ireland as part of curated exhibitions and installations in different venues, acting as a catalyst for new responses and forms of artistic expression from community groups.
Tour and Workshop at IMMA
On 26th March 2022 the group of teenagers and young adults visited the RFR exhibition in the Project Space at IMMA where they were guided through some GFANA activities and meditation by Brendan Fox, opening up a discussion about "queerness" and identity. Each participant was asked to bring in a personal object. Their stories about their objects were recorded and added to the video work already installed in IMMA.
The group was brought on a guided tour of The Narrow Gate of the Here-and-Now: Queer Embodiment by Hannah Tiernan.
Virtual Talk with Joe Caslin
On 28th April, artist and activist, Joe Caslin delivered an online talk, Are You Capable of Advancing Society?, to this group, discussing the power of art and its capacity to make a difference. Caslin introduced the participants to his work, focusing on a few key projects including the large mural he created in Dublin city for the marriage equality referendum, his installation in the National Gallery of Ireland, and his recent portrait of Amanda Nyoni in Tullamore as part of Spectacular Vernacular - a programme of events and exhibition curated by MOE, contributing to In the Open: Faoin Spéir.