HOME Exhibition/Hydrangea Project at the East Side Arts Festival – Launch 11 August

eastside artsThe East Side Arts Festival kicks off this week with another stimulating and wide-ranging programme.

Among the highlights is Still Bunker 2, a four-day event with a visual art, music, poetry and drawing participation. It will be launched at St Martin’s Church, Newtownards Road, Belfast on 11th August 2016 by Peter Osborne, chair of the Community Relations Council.

Still Bunker 2 is a collaboration between Belfast- based artist Bronagh Lawson and Suellen Semekoiski from the School of Art Institute, Chicago. In 2012, Bronagh and Suellen invited people to participate in Lament, a performative walking meditation on the Newtownards Road, documented by Textfilms and exhibited in Chicago.

This will be a return to St. Martin’s for both the Hydrangea project, who held ‘Still Bunker’ there in 2015, and for Mr. Osborne, who was christened in that same building, now a deconsecrated church.

The exhibition includes documentation of ‘Lament’, a performative walking meditation that the Hydrangea artists completed in 2012 during the first East Belfast arts Festival. It documents the experience of a group of people who turned up to participate including  Fr Martin Magill, of the Sacred Heart Parish in North Belfast:

 Fr Martin  said, “I had no idea that participating in a piece of contemporary art could be so transformative”,

adding that participating in  it was “one of the reasons the 4 Corners Festival Belfast started.” 

Rev John Cunningham, Minister of St Patrick’s Church of Ireland, Ballymacarrett said:J

“I am not entirely sure how it happened, but the Hydrangea project ‘Still Bunker’ in 2015 has acted as a catalyst for transformation on the Newtownards Road, we are very excited about having them back.”

The then Lord Mayor of Belfast Máirtín Ó Muilleoir saw the work in 2013 in the Sullivan galleries at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) and said about it:

“This is an uplifting and inspirational work which takes the very best of Belfast, its people and their genius, to an international audience. I was deeply moved by Suellen and Bronagh’s endeavours to heal through walking and meditating and cheered by their relentless enthusiasm for and love of our city”.

Other artists of Still Bunker 2 include Paul Moore aka #nonarnia, Stephen Millar, Scoil an Droichid, Ellie Niblock, Sinead McKeever, Bbeyond, Jayne Cherry, Frankie Quinn, Nathan Corothers, Hugh O Donnell, Ruth Gonzalez Moore, Colm Clarke, Brendan O Neill, Lesley Cherry, Maria McManus and Irelands leading poets. Still Bunker 2 is open to everyone on 11th August between 5pm and 9pm and  the following two days between 12pm and 9pm, Sunday 12-7pm.


Thursday 11 August


HOME Exhibition Opening

Friday 12 August

12- 9pm 

HOME Exhibition


Art as Healing Panel Discussion with Suellen Semekioski, Bronagh Lawson, Stephen Millar (NI) and Leora Sotto (Israel).


Music- What’s Arising?

Saturday 13 August

12- 9pm 

HOME Exhibition


Bbeyond performance art collective


Poetry from Pulpit with Maria McManus and leading local poets

Sunday 14 August

12- 7pm

Drawing Circle- come along and have your portrait or a portrait of your pet drawn, or bring a sketch book and join in!

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