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  • News

Switch success in Nenagh

Sunday, 2nd December, 2018 9:00am
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Switch success in Nenagh
Switch success in Nenagh

The recently-run 'Switch' contemporary video art project in Nenagh has been deemed a great success.

This was the 10th year of the project, which was created by Triona Ryan and Harald Turek, and co-ordinated with the help of Carol Kennedy. The project involved international film and video artworks projected for one week (November 5th to 12th) onto the windows of shops and other spaces throughout the town.

“2018 draws to a close, with Christmas cheer and thoughts of a new year,” said Triona. “SwitchArtproject takes this moment to thank the many folk who participated in the event and the warm welcomes received at Nenagh College, the CBS and at Nenagh CTC.

“Thanks for the superbly-prepped windows, John O’Meara, all things electrical John Bonfield, the support from the local auctioneers William Talbot, Eoin Dillon, Donal Bray, Colin Lowry, Peter and Deirdre Ryan, Seamus O'Brien from Tipp Co Co, our guests from the Nenagh Gaelscoil who came with cheer and the cúpla focal, for the pop-up cinema.”

Triona also thanked Tipperary Arts Office for their continuing support and the people who called in to the Switchspace shop with conversation, ideas and tips on how to do things better! She invited people to join the Switch mailing list by contacting “If you would like to get involved or have a window/premises that could host an artwork, we would love to hear from you.” 

Award-winning author Julian Gough of Nenagh was also part of the Switch project. He said it was great to see Switch lighting up the windows of Nenagh, “throwing modern art from all over the world out onto the streets” of a town that had “no tradition at all of knowingly creating original art in any medium”.

Julian welcomed how Nenagh has been transformed, embracing the arts with the likes of its arts centre, and arts festival. The town has also produced the likes of playwright Kevin McGee, Julian's best friend and “one of the top writers on the national soap opera, 'Fair City' (if you’ve ever laughed hard at an episode, it was one of his)”, and Donal Ryan, who has “immortalised the place, and shown Nenagh its face (thinly, very thinly, disguised) in a series of masterpieces.

“Half the town are now artists, in some way or another,” Julian exclaimed. “My own mother now paints, publishes poetry, has written a novel. My father has been making sculptures for decades now. Nenagh’s population (8,968!) is the highest it has ever been in its 800-year history.

“It even has foreigners, and likes them! The playgrounds are multi-ethnic. The young Poles and old Irish chat on the church steps each Sunday...
“For years I was so angry with the place I wouldn’t mention Nenagh’s name, in my work or in interviews, for fear the town would benefit somehow from the mention. Now I can say: Nenagh made me. I owe it my personality, such as it is. I owe it the career that I love. I owe it, ultimately, my happiness.”

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