Highlanes Gallery and Drogheda Arts Festival with partner, Lapua Art Museum, Finland, are delighted to announce the Irish premiere 7:42 which will open at Highlanes Gallery in early May.
Over the last decade there has been a number of cultural exchanges between the county of Louth and the area of Lapua in Western Finland, resulting in the the signing of a partnership agreement between the town of Lapua and Louth County Council in 2011 where the Mayor of Lapua, Paavo Latva-Rasky and the town council's vice chairman Kai Pontinen met with local authority officials and elected members in County Hall and Dundalk Town Hall.
Over the period a number of artists exhibited their work in Lapua and work by members of Louth Craftmark have been on sale in the Finnish area. Links have also been developed between schools in the two communities.
In 2010, four Irish artists Abigail O’Brien, Thomas Brezing, Sean Cotter and Mary Kelly, were invited to participate in a residency in Lapua, and were supported by both regions through Create Louth and the Lapua Art Museum to do this. One of the artists Sean Cotter had already been involved and had spent some time in Lapua previously. All of the artists developed a relationship with both the area and the director of the Arts Centre and museum Esa Honkimaki
The title of the exhibition 7.42 refers to 7:42am, which was the moment in which it all changed for people in this area of Lapua. The moment frozen in time on the watch face of a survivor of ammunitions factory explosion where 40 women died. The date was April 13 1976. This was a tragedy which left an indelible mark on the area and one which greatly affected the artists. The Lapua Art Museum was built on the site where the factory once was.
The work in the exhibition is largely made in response to this and explores themes of humanity and mortality.
Last December 7:42 opened at Lapua Art Museum, and in March 2012, it was also on view at the Cable Factory, Helsinki.
The exhibition opens on Friday 4 May from 6.00pm-8.00pm and continues until 4 September, 2012
Read the Irish Times Feature on the exhibition from late April 2012 written by Gemma Tipton following her visit to the exhibition in Helsinki and at Highlanes Gallery http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/features/2012/0418/1224314864279.html
Listen to a radion intereview with artists Abigail O'Brien and Sean Cotter on LMFM on Wednesday 2 May 2012 www.lmfm.ie/podcasts