Dublin’s Culture Connects embeds culture in everyday life because culture is central to human development and Dublin’s quality of life. We base projects on people’s stories, wishes and experiences, as we want every neighbourhood to know and ‘own’ their city’s cultural resources. We connect artists, groups and villages with libraries, museums and creative places to deepen their understanding of each other and themselves.
We’ve gathered a group of artists and practitioners as part of Engage the City who are working together within communities to test new and creative ways of working and put them into practice with Dublin-based neighbourhood groups.
One of the artists working on Engage The City is theatre maker Shane Daniel Byrne. Shane is looking to connect with interested participants across the city; below is his statement about what is important to him and what he would like to do as part of this project. If it speaks to you please get in touch and join us as we Engage The City in creative conversations!
“I am a gay man and an artist living in Dublin City. Like lots of Dubliners, I both love and loathe this town. For this project, I was inspired by Joe Caslin‘s piece “Claddagh Embrace” in the run up to the Marriage Equality Referendum. I was struck and moved that first day in 2015 by the giant public gesture of a mural depicting tenderness, affection and the simple embrace of two men on the streets of my city. I felt empowered, represented, visible and valued in my hometown in a way I hadn’t experienced before.
Since then it’s made me wonder how I would have felt if that mural was pasted on the gable end when I was younger. Would it have made coming to terms with my sexuality easier? Would I have felt supported? Would there have been louder opposition at that time?
Engage The City is all about listening to all kinds of voices from all kinds of Dubliners. My work usually stems from my own personal experience. I’m interested in seeing the difference between how it was for my generation compared to a new generation of gay men 10 years younger than me, who are coming of age in a post marriage equality Ireland. Has everything become easier? Did the visceral debate and visible hate of 2015 do more damage than we acknowledge? This project is open to anyone who identifies as a gay man because that’s how I identify. If you don’t fall into this category but want to be involved then please still let me know.
I’m seeking young men to meet me in the city centre and come on a walk. Our conversation will be based on all things Dublin and all things gay. It’s that simple. I’m curious to discover the commonalities and conflicts that arise from the individual one to one conversations. While a final “product” is not fixed yet I’m hoping that the conversations will be able to provide an accurate distillation of how Dublin is to live in for the young gay people of the city today. “
Get in touch with Shane Daniel Byrne by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org
Engage The City is a new programme by Dublin’s Culture Connects creating connections between artists and Dubliners through a variety of creative endeavours. With a team of artists, we are capturing the experiences of what Dublin is and what it could be; taking the temperature of how Dubliners are feeling and connecting people and place through cultural ideas.