Create, the national development agency for the collaborative arts, will host its annual networking day on Friday 1 December at the O’Donoghue Centre for Drama Theatre and Performance in NUIG. The networking day is for all artists who work in arts participation and collaborative arts practice. This year the networking day is focused on art, diversity and transformation. Key presenters will be US based artist Rick Lowe and UK based live artist Selina Thompson.

Rick Lowe is an artist whose unconventional approach to community revitalisation has transformed a long-neglected neighbourhood in Houston, Texas into a visionary public art project, Project Row Houses. The mission of Project Row Houses is to be a catalyst for transforming community through the celebration of art and African-American history and culture. Through this project, Rick Lowe has revitalised a neighbourhood and instituted community service and youth education services, alongside shifting the view of art from traditional studio practice. In 2014 Rick was awarded a McArthur Foundation Grant for his work on PRH. In 2017 he was awarded a Blade of Grass Fellowship for the Victoria Square Project, a documenta 14 project considering the situation of immigrants and refugees in relation to native Athenians in Victoria Square, Athens.

Selina Thompson is an acclaimed artist and performer based in Leeds. Her work is playful and engaging, focused on the politics of identity and how it defines our bodies, lives and environment. Selina has consistently addressed race and racial constructs, in such work as Salt, in which she retraced the Transatlantic slave route in a cargo ship, later creating an immersive theatre experience. In Dark and Lovely, Selina holds court in a 7 foot ‘tumble-weave’ made of weaves and hair extensions. Using text, music and recorded conversation from 6 months of visiting salons and beauty shops, Dark and Lovely explores afro hair and the complexities of the social debate around black hair.

Create will also welcome Chris Baldwin, Creative Director of Galway 2020, film-maker Jijo Sebastian, visual artist Seamus Nolan, and NUIG-based academic Dr Charlotte McIvor.

The day will be interactive, with a chance to both view collaborative arts projects and reflect on ideas of transformative practice that engage with diversity. The day is also a key opportunity for artists working in collaborative contexts to meet up, socialise and exchange insights and experiences, as well as to learn about the latest innovative arts projects taking place both nationally and internationally. Create extends its thanks to NUI Galway and the Galway Arts Centre.

Further information can be found at


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