Wednesday, 23 September 2009

You Are Here

My friend Jane Hughes recommended FUK laboratories when I told her about our plans for You Are Here, and happily I checked them out. The first impressions came through last night and they are very, very nice indeed. 

Monday, 21 September 2009

Posted Poetry

The good man Colm Keegan posted me some poetry as he promised (a long time ago it feels) A very nice surprise.




These coloured chalks

Fell into my lap

Fruit from a swaying bag

On a passer by.

So I use them.

To plead and swear

upon the slabs

That you wear and tear upon

and smooth out with your feet.


'Look at me!', I write

'I am beneath you, like the pool

from a leaky radiator,

like the roots beneath the trees.'


My knees don't feel

the cold housed in the concrete

I gave up on heat.

Your street

Is a barren whore to me



I seek to plant nothing

But words.

And if the rain

washes them away

If no-one sees what I say

The chalk dust

At least

will brighten the dirt

trapped by my fingernails.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Utopian Bus Tour

The Utopian Bus Tour went very well by all accounts. I had a lot of fun working with the group from Mind the Gap and turning all their research and ideas into an alternative Dublin, into a city that doesn't really exist. This is obviously a theme of mine, especially when it comes to writing about Dublin. It wasn't easy though, to envision a different city, a better city even, and perhaps that's half the problem, a failure to see past our current, veyr real cities, and focus on the 'invisible cities' of our own collective potential and imagination. 

Friday, 4 September 2009

Mind the Gap

Mind The Gap is a collaborative public art project initiated by
Michelle Browne to work with artists, designers, architects and
planners to look at open spaces in the city and consider new uses for
them. Over the course of two months the group have explored areas
across Dublin city considering how we can re-imagine our civic
society. Throughout Absolut Fringe we will present a range of
interventions that will inform and delight. The project is based at
thisisnotashop on Benburb Street Dublin 7 where you can get
information and contribute to our exhibition of ideas for the city.

Mind The Gap is an Absolut Fringe Commission.

Participants: Michelle Browne, Siobhan Carroll, Carolann Courtney,
Mark Durkan, John Holten, Colm Keller, Issac Lawless, Bryan O’Connell,
Jeni Roddy, Naomi Ronan, Tom Walsh, Chong Wang.

SEPT 5th - 4.30pm

Utopian Bus Tour – A guided tour through
Dublin with a difference. Drawing on unrealised
proposals for the city and imagining new uses
for vacant spaces, the Utopian Bus Tour will
guide you through an alternative vision for the
city. Leaves from Smithfield Square.

SEPT 12th + 19th 8-11pm

Don’t Quote Me – Projected on the outside
of the iconic Screen cinema, Mind The Gap
looks to the silver screen to investigate
Dublin’s current dilemmas. The city, planning,
corruption, and the fall of a nation are explored
through the history of cinema.

SEPT 7th -12th

Fare Play? – Taking off in a taxi from Foster
Place, Mind The Gap will offer you a chance
to learn about NAMA while visiting the sites
of the nation’s current big question. Informed
taxi drivers will explain the workings of NAMA
and show you where it will all happen. Various
times, limited space, booking essential. Email
for details.

SEPT 11th + 18th 6pm - 6.30pm

Operetta – A lone performer looks out over the
city and sings a lament to its citizens. Mind The
Gap presents a solo operatic performance on
Foster Place of arias that highlight the current
plight of the city and its uncertain future.

SEPT 19th 12pm - 3pm

Flower Show – Following from the tradition of
competitive window box competitions in the
Smithfield area, Mind The Gap offer you the
chance to come to Smithfield Plaza and design
your own flower box display to be adjudicated
by Lord Ross of Birr Castle, Father to Lord
Oxmantown. Take this opportunity to bring plant
life to the plaza.

SEPT 20th 3pm

The Big Freeze – Goethe famously said
“architecture is frozen music.” Taking
inspiration from the architecture of Smithfield
Plaza, a brass band will perform The Ride of
The Valkyries by Wagner. This collaborative
performance highlights the
peaks and troughs of Smithfield Square
as a public space.


Public Seating – Mind the Gap will provide
alternative public seating in the city for
visitors and commuters over the course of
Absolut Fringe. Seating will be provided on
Aungier Street, Hawkins Street and other
city centre locations

Sunken Site – Hammond Lane – A series
of visual proposals will be presented for an
unused site on Hammond Lane and Church
Street. A collection of proposals taken from
an open call from designers and architects
explore the possibilities of the disused spaces
in the city.

Thisisnotashop – The hub of the Mind The Gap
operation, the gallery will host an exhibition of
ideas for the city. Inspired by the urban myth
that Santiago Calatrava designed the James
Joyce bridge on the back of a napkin, we invite
you, the viewer, to present your ideas for the
city of an ever-expanding array of napkins.
The gallery will also host The Smithfield
Archive presenting the history of the area and
unrealised proposals for its regeneration.

Watch out for other surprise events on our blog!

Contact us at,

Fringe Box Office
Filmbase, Curved St., Dublin 2
call: 1850 FRINGE

26 Benburb St, Dublin 7.