With just two weeks to go before the launch of Happy Days, the inaugural multi-arts festival celebrating Samuel Beckett in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, the visual arts programme is blazing the trail.

 

Two exhibitions by Atom Egoyan (Canada) and Joseph Kosuth (US) are the latest to open alongside Antony Gormley’s “Tree for Waiting for Godot” (UK) and Jeremy Henderson’s (NI) Paintings: A country road. A Tree. Evening.

 

Steenbeckett is film-maker AtomEgoyan’s farewell to film and old ways of making cinema. The installation features an obsolete editing machine, 2000 feet of 35mm celluloid, and a video projection of a solitary man – actor John Hurt as Krapp in Egoyan’s own film of Krapp’s Last Tape – nursing his memories as he eavesdrops on his younger self. Steenbeckett was produced by ArtAngel in 2002.

 

Conceptual artist Joseph Kosuth’s meditation on Beckett, seen here in the UK and Ireland for the first time, invites the viewer into a floating world in which sculptural neon text hovers in darkness with soft black rubber underfoot. The installation entitled, ‘Texts for Nothing – Enniskillen’ Samuel Beckett, in play, delivers a sensual experience while questioning the nature of art, word and meaning.

 

Antony Gormley’s festival commission “Tree for Waiting for Godot” will be exhibitedin The Grand Yard, Castle Coole, Enniskillen, until 13 September. The sculpture, made from 37 separate pieces of stainless steel, has been commissioned for a future Aboriginal Australian-Irish co-production of Beckett’s most famous play.

 

The late Jeremy Henderson lived in Enniskillen and went to Portora Royal School, as did Samuel Beckett. Henderson’s landscape paintings are full of Beckett sensibility, and this selected retrospective takes its title from the stage directions for Waiting for Godot: “A country road. A tree. Evening”.

 

Several other artists can be seen as part of the Happy Days Enniskillen International Beckett Festival, including an exhibition of paintings by London-based artist Jason Sumray, and a selection of John Minihan’s famous photographs of Beckett on show in the Old Library at Portora Royal School. Visitors to the Beckett Basement at Castle Coole will explore the basement of this historic house through a series of soundscapes based on Beckett’s writing, musical influences and the sonic mechanics of his texts, directed by Cathie Boyd.

 

Listings Details:

 

Visual Arts at Happy Days Enniskillen International Beckett Festival

 

Tree for Waiting for Godot”, Antony Gormley, 16 July-13 September, The Grand Yard, Castle Coole, Enniskillen. World Premiere. Part of the London 2012 Festival

 

Steenbeckett, Atom Egoyan, 9-29 August, The Clinton Centre Higher Bridges Gallery, Enniskillen. Irish Premiere. Part of the London 2012 Festival

 

Texts for Nothing – Enniskillen’ Samuel Beckett, in play, Joseph Kosuth, 9-29 August, Cooper Wilkinson Building, Enniskillen. UK & Irish Premiere.

 

Paintings by Jeremy Henderson: A country road. A tree. Evening, 3-31 August, The Gallery, Waterways Ireland, Enniskillen

 

Krapp’s Last Tape: Paintings by Jason Sumray, 22-27 August, The Entrance Hall & Cloisters Gallery, Portora Royal School, Enniskillen

 

Beckett Basement: Samuel Beckett – words / sounds & moving images, directed by Cathie Boyd, 23-27 August, Castle Coole Basement, Enniskillen

 

John Minihan Photographs, 23-27 August, The Seale Room, Portora Royal School, Enniskillen

 

Dark At Its Full, An Evening of Music and Film on reflection of Beckett’s novella Mercier and Camier, curated by Dr. Helen Sharp with contributions from pianist and musicologist Dr. Catherine Laws, artist Seamus Harahan, composer and installation artist Ciaran Maher, film-maker David Prior and poet Larry Lynch, Friday 24 August, 7.30pm, Entrance Hall, Castle Coole.

 

Happy Days 2012 is funded by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board; Arts Council Northern Ireland; the London 2012 Festival; Fermanagh District Council; and Lakeland & Inland Waterways

 

 

ENDS

 

For additional information and images, please contact:

Northern Ireland | ROI

Alison Knox

alisonlknox@gmail.com | 0796 698 3336

 

UK National and International

Anna Vinegrad:

press@annavinegrad.com | 0207 609 8905 | 0781 3808 487

 

For general enquiries about the festival and for a printed programme contact

Happy Days 2012 Festival Office: Tel +44 (0)286 632 2658

 

 

Editors Notes

About the Cultural Olympiad and London 2012 Festival

The London 2012 Cultural Olympiad is the largest cultural celebration in the history of the modern Olympic and Paralympic Movements. Spread over four years, it is designed to give everyone in the UK a chance to be part of London 2012 and inspire creativity across all forms of culture, especially among young people.

 

The culmination of the Cultural Olympiad will be the London 2012 Festival, a spectacular 12-week nationwide celebration bringing together leading artists from across the world with the very best from the UK, from Midsummers Day on 21 June and running until the final day of the Paralympic Games on 9 September 2012.The London 2012 Festival will celebrate the huge range, quality and accessibility of the UK’s world-class culture including dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, fashion, film and digital innovation, giving the opportunity for people across the UK to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

 

Principal funders of the Cultural Olympiad and London 2012 Festival are Arts Council England, Legacy Trust UK and the Olympic Lottery Distributor. BP and BT are Premier Partners of the Cultural Olympiad and the London 2012 Festival.

For more details on the programme, to download the London 2012 Festival official guide and to sign up for information visit www.london2012.com/festival

Arts Council Northern Ireland

The Arts Council is the lead development agency for the Arts in Northern Ireland, providing the main support for artists and arts organizations throughout the region through a range of funding opportunities. The Arts council distributes public money and National Lottery funds to organisations that develop and deliver arts programmes across all of society.

Northern Ireland Tourist Board

The Happy Days Enniskillen International Beckett Festival has received support towards the 2012 event from the NITB Tourism Events Funding Programme 2012/13. The event is part of the NITB led ni2012 programme of events taking place throughout Northern Ireland during 2012 and it is featured in the Big Guide to Big Events and on the ni2012 web portal. Visit www.ni2012.com

Fermanagh Lakelands

Fermanah Travel offers during the festival

Call save number from ROI  1850230230.

Killyhevlin Hotel ****
Tel: (028) 6632 3481
Web: www.killyhevlin.com
Why not come and enjoy the world’s first annual multi-arts festival celebrating the work and influences of Samuel Beckett from Thursday 23rd to Monday 27th August.  Make a weekend of it and enjoy two nights bed and breakfast with one four course dinner from only £149pps

Killyhevlin Hotel ****
Tel: (028) 6632 3481
Web: www.killyhevlin.com
Why not come and enjoy the world’s first annual multi-arts festival celebrating the work and influences of Samuel Beckett from Thursday 23rd to Monday 27th August.  Enjoy three nights bed and breakfast with one four course dinner from only £195pps

Lough Erne Resort Hotel *****
Tel: (028) 6632 3230
Web: www.lougherneresort.com
Stay in this 5 Star Resort including breakfast from just £55 per person sharing.
From: GBP £55 per person sharing, based on 2 persons sharing