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Art in the Landscape: Festival of Change

An exciting new festival looking at art in the landscape is coming to Offaly at the start of April.

Download Brochure – Art in the Landscape Festival of Change / Íosluchtaigh Ealain sa Tirdhreach Féile an Athraithe.

The Festival of Change is a collaboration between Offaly County Council, Mayo County Council and Visual Artists Ireland and is funded through the Arts Council’s Invitation to Collaboration Scheme. The festival will offer an eclectic programme of events and activities, looking at the impact art (both physical and intangible) can have on place and people, socially, economically and culturally. The festival will be based on two sites in the respective counties: the Tir Saile Sculpture Trail in Mayo, and Lough Boora Sculpture Park in Offaly.

Central to the festival is the commissioning of two new art works – one for each location. The works have been commissioned by Dr Helen Pheby, formally of Yorkshire Sculpture Park – invited curator for the Art in the Landscape project – from artists Hardeep Singh Sahota and Tim Smith, both of whom have many years’ experience collaborating with communities, bringing the dance form of Bhangra, with its mystic origins as a form of communal celebration of harvesting, amongst the Punjabi farming communities of South Asia, into the development of modern hybrid cultures, using dance and the ephemeral qualities of light-painting, to celebrate the specialness of the local and particular but, crucially, placed it in a global context.

The Festival of Change in Offaly takes place on Friday 5th and Saturday 6th April.

In Offaly, the Festival will kick off at Tullamore’s Esker Arts, on the morning of Friday 5th April with Tionól, a gathering of invited individuals, groups and artists who will share their ‘big or small’ ideas about what possibilities ‘art in the landscape’ can hold to an interested audience. This will lead into an open networking event the ‘Conversation Café’ – where ideas from the Tionól, can be expanded upon or new ideas discussed in an informal and relaxed forum. Throughout the rest of the day there will be different talks and events, including in the early evening the opening of Midland: Mother Myth Memory, an exhibition by the celebrated artist Rita Duffy, followed by a Bhangra Ceili – Fusion with all groups welcome to come and join.

On Saturday 6th April, there will be a poetry workshop at Esker Arts, with a number of events also taking place in Lough Boora Sculpture Park, including walks with artist Eileen Hutton, who uses an alternative photography process to create soil portraits on light sensitive paper, and La na Mona – a curated theatrical event by Rita Duffy and Nuala Hayes, performer/storyteller who  ‘…offer a magical mystery walk through

Lough Boora Sculpture Park, which will divert, entertain and inspire participants. A surreal and multi-sensory experience in this renewed natural environment with surprise guests -followed by tea and turf cake.’ The festival then moves back to Esker Arts in the evening culminating with Rhythm of Light, an exhibition launch and commission showcase by Hardeep Singh Sahota & Tim Smith.

A festival programme will be presented in Co Mayo on the weekend of Friday 12th and Saturday 13th April for full details see

The Festival of Change is part of Art in the Landscape, a research project undertaken by Offaly County Council, Mayo County Council and Visual Artists Ireland, and funded by Arts Council.

All festival events are free, but booking is required. Early booking is advised given limited capacity of many of the events.

Call out for Ideas for Art in Landscape: Festival of Change

Download Full Press Release here.

As part of the Art in Landscape: Festival of Change there will be an event called Tionól – a gathering of ideas; a creative space to share ideas and an opportunity for participants to share their ‘big’ or ‘small’ ideas around Art in the Landscape. The purpose of the event is to share ideas and spark conversations locally.  Please note this is not a call for project proposals that will be implemented, but for ideas that will inspire future thinking.

Do you have an interest in, work in or volunteer in arts, heritage, culture, tourism, community development, the environment or economic development? Are you a local community member living near Lough Boora Sculpture Park in Offaly or the Tír Sáile Trail in North Mayo? Perhaps you have an idea for an Art in the Landscape project or event you would like to share? 

If you have an idea, you would like to share and discuss at the Tionól event you can submit it for consideration. Ideas will be shortlisted based on having a mix of ideas from different sectors at the event. Selected presenters will have presentation slots of 10 minutes each. Please indicate if you would like to take part in the Offaly or Mayo event. 

Specific queries relating to the project are welcome from January 3rd 2024.  Deadline for ideas is Monday 12th Feb 2024. 

Please submit using the link below


Tionól will take place in: 

Offaly – Esker Arts Centre, Tullamore on Friday 5th April 2024  

North Mayo – Áras Inis Gluaire, Belmullet on Friday 12th April 2024