Uillinn West Cork Arts Centre is hosting a range of free events for Bealtaine, Ireland’s annual festival celebrating creativity as we age, as part of the Arts for Health Partnership Programme. Visitors can explore films, songs and artworks produced by artists in collaboration with older people in care settings across West Cork; home carers are invited to a drop-in workshop as part of the Creative Carers programme; and Salt and Pepper returns for the older LGBTQ+ community.
The Last Train to Nowhere
Monday 1 May, 11am | At Uillinn and participating hospitals | Online screening
The Last Train to Nowhere is a short multimedia film exploring memory and imagination that draws on poetry, drawings, and a musical soundscape within the theme of West Cork Railways. Coordinated by composer and filmmaker Justin Grounds, in collaboration with participants in the Arts for Health programme in Skibbereen, Schull and Bantry community hospitals and visual artists Sarah Ruttle, Sharon Dipity and writer Elizabeth Murray, the project evolved over several months, with each piece of artistic work inspiring the next stage of the development.
1 – 31 May | Uillinn, Stairwell Gallery
The Bealtaine exhibition includes work created on Uillinn’s programmes for older people over the last year, both at the Centre and through outreach programmes at community hospitals and day care centres. Alongside original artwork from the film The Last Train to Nowhere, the exhibition features Graffiti (From Cave Painting to Graffiti Part 2), a series of mixed media artworks created by residents of Skibbereen Community Hospital, facilitated by artist Sharon Dipity, inspired by graffiti from around the world, and a new series of paintings by the Arts for an Active Mind group exploring doorways, both as a physical object and metaphor. Arts for an Active Mind is a weekly session facilitated by Paul Cialis that has taken place at Uillinn on Monday mornings since 2002.
1 – 31 May | Castletownbere, Dunmanway and Bantry Libraries
Curated by artist Bénédicte Coleman, Blanket Stitch is a series of exhibitions at Castletownbere, Dunmanway and Bantry Libraries, sharing freehand embroidery works inspired by the idea of ‘home’ and the preloved blankets that form the base of the works by participants on the Arts for Health Partnership Programme.
Salt & Pepper
2 – 13 May | Uillinn, Studio 3
Salt and Pepper returns for a second year with artist Toma McCullim as creative producer, ‘salt and Pepper because we are at the time of life when our hair is starting to speckle but we are also the essential spice of life!’ The project invites older people who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Trans or a sprinkle of all those terms and shake of others to weekly sessions (Tuesdays, 7 – 9.30pm) or studio drop in (2 – 13 May) to create together and document an important moment in time for our older and rural LGBTQ+ community; reflecting on past and present challenges and celebrating older rainbow generation commonality and achievements.
In the Picture
Friday 5 May, 11.30am | Uillinn
In the Picture invites people living with dementia and their family, friends or professional carers to visit Uillinn’s current exhibition, to look and discuss with others in a safe and welcoming environment. These special tours are about making observations, describing, and building connections, facilitated by healthcare professional Sarah Cairns and artist Sarah Ruttle. This seated tour includes light refreshments as part of the social and friendly approach. Booking essential: email@example.com or 028-22090.
As part of Age & Opportunity’s Roots and Shoots, a nationwide programme of Bealtaine visual arts events in partnership with Ireland’s leading visual arts organisations, Artist in Residence Sharon Dipity invites participants to explore mark-making, movement and writing on 16 May.
Sharon Dipity was awarded this year’s Bealtaine Artist in Residence by Uillinn in partnership with Cork County Council. Sharon will be in studio at Uillinn from 3 May – 3 June, investigating the dynamic between the drawn line and body movement in the context of her own experience of aging. Visitors to Uillinn are invited to drop in to Sharon’s studio for ‘Thank Uillinn its Friday!’ and take part in Sharon’s drawing process.
Skibbereen HSE Campus Choir
Monday 8 May | Private event at Perrot House
Bringing music to the programme is the HSE Campus Choir in Skibbereen with Choral Director Liz Clark, will be heading over to the older residents at Perrott House to share a special lunchtime concert of songs from their repertoire.
Thursday 18 May, 10am – 2pm | Schull Harbour Hotel
Home carers from across West Cork are invited to a drop-in workshop with visual artist Sarah Ruttle as part of Wellness Day in Schull Harbour Hotel, organised by Carer and Older Persons Initiative and HSE Cork Kerry Community Healthcare. This event is part of Creative Carers, an ongoing programme for family carers who provide care for older people in the home.
The Dunmanway Sessions
Friday 26 May | Online
A special first track release from The Dunmanway Sessions album. A series of songs, sung acapella in English and Irish, have being recorded without frills in Dunmanway Community Hospital and Day Care Centre with Contemporary Folk Artist Lewis Barfoot, residents and staff over the last few months.