Monday, 20 November 2017

Fairy Photo competition winner, calendar launch and revamped shop


Last Wednesday night, 15th November we held a celebration night for all the photographers who entered our Fairy Photo competition earlier in the year. A shortlisted number of photos were selected to feature in the Ardagh Tree Fairies 2018 calendar which was launched on the night with the competition winner Joanne Parker's photo Lainey Fairy on the front cover. Joanne as presented with a framed version of her wining photo while all the competition entries were on display on the night. The exhibition will be up until the end of January.

The revamped craft shop was also revealed on the night and will be open by appointment or during any events and classes over the next few weeks with lots of Christmas decorations, cards and gifts on offer from local craftspeople. The 2018 calendar is available for €5 in the shop or online here for €7.50 including post and packaging.


Sunday, 8 October 2017

Spooktacular line-up for Ardagh Fright Fest

Ardagh Fright Fest returns for the third year with the support of Longford Arts Office. This year promises to be the best ever with a full line-up of events from 28th October to 4th November. We have something for every one with three days of fantastic literature events kicking off the week.


This year we are joined by E.R. Murray, Ruth Frances Long, Caroline Busher and Jane Gilheaney Barry for a number of events for children, teens and adults. Favourites such as Ardagh School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Samhain Walk and Spooky Art Camp return and we also will have visits from Ardagh Tree Fairies for some Scary Fairy Fun. The final event is The Night of the Living Fed Banquet with Cook n Dine Longford on Saturday 4th November.
There's something for everyone as you can see in the at a glance guide below. Most events have limited spaces so book your tickets now.


Thursday, 5 October 2017

Maths Week coming soon

Don't forget to book your school groups in for Maths Week from Monday 16th to Friday 20th October. We still have some availability, €4 per person for groups of more than ten, €5 per person for groups of ten or less. Two sessions daily from 10.30am to 12.00pm and 12.30pm to 2.00pm.


 Will you be able to find some of these shapes around the building? We will also be seeing what shapes we find outside before having some fun creating patterns with tessellating shapes with printing and paper mosaics. This curriculum-linked workshop can be adapted to suit all ages.

If you can't make it along, why not try some tessellations for yourself with this tessellation creator and if you figure out what the hammer does, let us know!

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Fairies Photography Competition





Our woods have been getting ready for the arrival of the Ardagh Tree Fairies on 20th August. We've spotted lots of new fairy homes and palaces (see photos above). To celebrate this, the continuing Year of the Fairies and the 100th anniversary of the Cottingley Fairies, we are delighted to announce an exciting photography competition. We are looking for fairy-themed photos of all sorts, whether it's your own little (or not so little) fairy in costume, a fairy home, recreations of the Cottingley photos or a real fairy you've caught in a jar we want to see it. A selection of entries will be put on exhibition for two weeks in September/October.
To enter send your fairy-themed photos to creativeardagh@gmail.com and pay the correct entry fee through the link below (1 photo €5 or 3 for €10) by 5pm on Friday 8th September. We will be holding a prize-giving exhibition later in September. Watch this space for more details.


Photo entry (1) €5

Photo entry (3) €10

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Domhnach na bhFraocháin celebrations during Cruthú Arts Festival

It's almost time for our annual Domhnach na bhFraocháin/Bilberry Sunday celebrations and we are really excited about all that is on offer this year. Once again the event is part of the multi-disciplinary Cruthú Arts Festival (http://cruthuartsfestival.com/programme/) (See below).
11.00am
We start with the traditional walk up Brí Leith in search of the elusive bilberries which were once sent to the High King's Lughnasa feast. Meeting at Ardagh GAA pitch at 11.00am we will be guided by Brendan Farrell. Wear suitable footwear and clothing.
We are delighted to have the Community Bus to offer lifts out from Longford town to anyone who needs them. The bus will leave the back of the Market Square (old swimming pool car park) at 10.30am and return after the book launch. First come first served!
12.30 - 1.00pm
After the walk there will be tea and scones for weary walkers in Ardagh Heritage and Creativity Centre.
1.30pm
We are honoured to have Esther Göbl Uí Nualláin reading from her Irish language children's books.
Esther is of Austrian/Irish parentage. Born and bred in Longford, she still lives there with her husband, John, and their three children, Saorlaith, Diarmaid and Cian. They are rearing their family through Irish.
Esther is a teacher of Irish at the second level Meán Scoil Mhuire in Longford town. She writes for her own children and, from this, grew her interest in writing for others. Eachtraí Uchtaigh, a collection of short stories, is her first publication for children. In 2010 MÓINÍN published Ruball Trioball – her first novel for 6-8 year-old readers – This novel was awarded the accolade of ‘2010 Book of the Year for Younger Readers/ Réics Carló Award’.
Also published is her children’s novel Is Mise do Chara and her latest work for younger readers Cleasaí an Coinín.

2.00pm Launch of the King at the Back of the Hill anthology.
Last March we hosted a very interesting evening with archaeologist Adel Coleman who told us about her research findings. Adel took on the task of writing up the dig at the Back of the Hill, Ardagh which had been left in the National Archives since competed by Liam de Paor in 1967. That night we put a call out for writing and art inspired by the dig and the story of the skeleton of The King at the Back of the Hill alleged to be King Maine of Teabhta, son of Niall of the Nine Hostages. We were delighted with the response which includes art, photography, poetry, short stories and factual writing from adults and children. The book will be launched at 2.00pm on Sunday. 
Looking forward to seeing lots of you on Sunday, but don't forget to also check out the other Cruthú events starting tonight with the launch of the Amboise Donnelle exhibition in Longford Library where our own Ann Gerety Smyth will join other local writers reading.


Cruthú Arts Festival (http://cruthuartsfestival.com/programme/) sees the town transformed into a hub of creativity over the four days. Highlights this year include the Opening at the Shane Cullen exhibition on Thursday 27th, Eggsistentialism in Backstage Theatre on Friday 28th, David Kitt on Saturday 29th and Áine Cahill on Sunday 30th both in St. John's Church. 14 empty buildings will  host a diverse range of visual art exhibitions daily from 12pm to 7pm and there will be Cafe Sessions, a Slam Night, and many events and workshops too. Two new and unique elements are ReActors and Square Eyes, ReActors sees local directors take on new scripts from local writers. These plays have already had their first outings in Ballymahon and Granard libraries but if you missed them come along to John Browne's on Saturday evening. Square Eyes brings together young local talent to host live music performances, create 10 large mural works and the display recycled cardboard furniture. The extremely popular Street Art element of the festival also returns this year with several more walls around Longford being transformed by national and international artists. Community groups and local schools have created sculptures which will be positioned around the streets and photos from the  Expressions photography competition will be brought right out onto the street in large format which is sure to be impressive.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Workshops in conjunction with the Leinster Fleadh

We are delighted to have been asked to get involved with by the Leinster Fleadh by the organisers in Ballymahon. We will offer a range of creative heritage-based workshops during the week from 10th to 15th July at 11am and 2pm daily.
Monday 10th July: Midir and Etain felting workshop
Bring the legend to life: listen to our story, be inspired by our collection and create a scene using unspun wool.

Tuesday 11th July:  The King at the Back of the Hill weaving workshop
Hear about King Maine, be inspired by the finds of the dig and create an art piece by weaving various fabrics and fibres.
 
Wednesday 12th July: Ardagh Saints clay symbols workshop
Learn about  saints in Ardagh, be inspired by symbols in Early Christian art and create a inlayed clay tile.
Thursday 13th July: Sketching in the Village
Join us on a tour of the model estate village and sketch landmarks such as the Clock Tower, Lych Gate, etc. (Indoor option if weather doesn't co-operate)

Friday 14th July:King at the Back of the Hill
Make your own model Iron Age fort like King Maine's using clay and sticks etc.
Saturday 15th July: Midir and Etain paint the legend workshop
Be inspired by the beautiful legend of Midir and Etain and create your own painting.

Prices: €10 per person including all materials. Workshops are approximately 1.5 to 2 hrs in duration.
All ages welcome from toddler to adult. Children must be accompanied.

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Tickets now on sale for A Midsummer Night's Dream


Tickets for our unique retelling of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream in the idyllic outdoor setting of Ardagh are now on sale through Eventbrite.
The local legend of Midir and Etain inspired a bard from Brittany (in the 12th Century) to pen ‘Lai d’Orphrey’ which then inspired Shakespeare to pen this beautiful comedy. After years of dreaming and months of planning we are now at the final stages of rehearsals and are very excited about the upcoming performance.
Tickets are €10 for adults and €6 for children (under 5s free). Light refreshments from Chef Martin O'Connor of Cook n Dine Longford are included at the intermission.
Please note this is an outdoor performance and the action will move from the garden through Ardagh Neighbourhood Park woods. Please bring along a portable chair and rain gear (no umbrellas please).
This is the first ever full length performance from Creative Ardagh Players and some of our cast have never acted before so we are already very proud of their achievements. Come along and give them your support on Saturday 1st July at 7.00pm sharp. Fairy dress optional but encouraged.