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OFFSET: intergenerational printmaking project and exhibition at Galway University Hospitals

Date posted: 31 July 2019

Image shown: OFFSET. Photo Credit: Ruby Wallis.

Offset, an intergenerational printmaking exhibition, will open at Galway University Hospitals on 6 August 2019. Celebrating exchange between the ages and wards of Galway University Hospitals, the project was developed through participatory workshops with patients. 

Offset explores the significance of the simple postcard in connecting from a distance, making someone’s day, and in making the hospital more human – even if we seem to not be saying very much.

The Offset project and exhibition is led by Saolta Arts (formerly Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust). The participative arts programme is facilitated by professional artists who tailor workshops to the individual needs and interests of patients whilst drawing from their own arts practices. Whether journeys of the imagination or a change of scene from the ward, a new way of working or a pastime rekindled, the activities spark conversations with new friends and fresh dialogue with old ones. The artist team respects the parameters of the care context, navigating limitations to support participants in reaching their creative potential and in making the hospital a place of possibilities.

In care for the elderly and rehabilitation contexts, this fosters what can still flourish when other things seem to be fading. The creative process promotes autonomy otherwise limited by ill health, and participants’ achievements can help them to re-evaluate their abilities in the face of change. In paediatrics, the workshops nurture the imagination of young patients and their siblings to allay fears and make positive memories of their time in hospital. The Offset project brought an exciting opportunity for an artist to work across these contexts at Galway University Hospitals.

Offset is supported by the Creative Ireland Programme’s National Creativity Fund and through core funding from Galway City Council, Galway County Council and Saolta University Health Care Group. The project was made possible by the generosity and insights of artists Aoife Barrett of Print Van Go and Margaret Irwin West, and the patients and staff of Galway University Hospitals.

Offset runs until 15 September 2019 at Galway University Hospitals.

For ten years, Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust provided a multidisciplinary Arts and Health programme to promote wellbeing and improve the hospital experience at Galway’s public hospitals. Saolta Arts will now work across five counties, making the hospital a place of possibilities at Saolta University Health Care Group’s seven sites. 


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