Eye opening exhibition comes to Rua Red next month

By Aideen O'Flaherty

AN eye-opening exhibition featuring pieces from internationally-renowned modern artists, which aims to provide an alternative narrative to the political status quo, will open in Rua Red next month.

The ‘How to Say it the Way it is!’ exhibition is the result of a major partnership between Rua Red and a/political, a London-based non-profit organisation that collaborates with socio-political artists.

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The exhibition will feature selected works from a number of contemporary artists, including Ai Weiwei and Oleg Kulik, and for many of the artists it will the be first time they’ll have their work shown in Ireland.

Maolíosa Boyle, the director of Rua Red, spoke to The Echo about what people can expect from ‘How to Say it the Way it is!’ and her hopes for the exhibition.

How did the partnership between Rua Red and a/political come about?

Well, previously to this role I was the director of the Void Gallery in Derry and I had worked with a/political. Shortly after I started at Rua Red I went to London [and met people from a/political] and found that we had a shared interest in social and political issues.

The artists they are supporting fit in with my vision for Rua Red.

It’s been said that South Dublin County offers a unique context for this exhibition, in what way do you believe South Dublin County offers a unique context?

The reason I went for this post [as director of Rua Red] is because I feel that here is so different to anywhere else in Dublin. The people here are so outspoken, and I wanted to reflect that in some way.

I think it’s very important that the programme is kind of reflective of the community. I want a new-found ownership of this space by the people in the county.

What mediums will be on display as part of the exhibition, will it be an interactive exhibition?

It will be incredibly interactive. There will be photography, sculpture, prints and installations. There will also be a number of talks, films and workshops.

The idea is that the next different piece [that will be shown in Rua Red] will be created in response to the exhibition.

The exhibition is being curated by Franko B, what do you think his curation will bring to the exhibition?

Franko B’s work is incredibly diverse, it ranges from embroidery to sculpture. When I met with Franko [to discuss the programme] he was incredibly enthused. He came to Rua Red to get a sense of the area and he loved it. His view of art is similar to mine as it’s non-elitist.

You’ve previously mentioned that the pieces on display will engage with “real and raw issues”, what are some of the issues that will be confronted?

The exhibition isn’t holding anything back at all. Homelessness, survival, poverty, homophobia and the Church are some of the issues that will be confronted by the pieces on display.

What would you say to someone who’s curious about seeing the exhibition, but who might be a bit nervous at they wouldn’t have great familiarity with the art world?

I completely understand that, because art spaces are seen as elite spaces, but Rua Red isn’t like that. We are here to engage with the people and bring the best possible Irish and international artists to the area. It’s free and everybody is welcome.

‘How to Say It the Way it is!’ is on display in Rua Red from October 7 to December 2, with an opening night being held on October 6 at 6pm. Check out www.ruared.ie for more details.

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