Gail Ritchie Contemporary Art
Overall, October has been a surprisingly good month full of unexpected things. It began with a trip to England to visit family. As part of this there was a day trip to the historic mill at Saltaire built by (surprise) Sir Titus Salt. He also built houses for his workers so that they would have access to clean air and light, constructed parks and commissioned public sculpture to adorn the streets (image above left). No longer functioning as a textile factory, Saltaire houses a huge collection of work by David Hockney . It was an unexpected surprise to see his series The Arrival of Spring, and to walk round the streets of Saltaire, a model village and example of what good town planning can look like even today. Another surprise, towards the end of the month came in the form of an award from the Political Studies Association of Ireland. I was thrilled to receive the Basil Chubb prize for the best PhD thesis (produced in an Irish University) in any field of politics. I was presented with the prize by the President of PSAI Jennifer Kavanagh at Belfast City Hall (image above right) and it was a great way to end the 'PhD years'! I am conscious, however, that my life takes place parallel to bigger, global events and this October has not been stellar in that regard. I think of all of those just now who do not have access to clean air or light, who may not live to see the next Spring and whose towns and villages - wherever they are - are under bombardment. I hope that other better things happen for them.
This is where you will find news about exhibitions, projects, events, other artists, travels, experimental work and sometimes things that I just enjoyed seeing! I hope you enjoy them too!