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The sea port in Dublin, which accounts for around two-thirds of Ireland’s port traffic, has been run by the semi-state Dublin Port Company since 1997. Their new ‘Port Perspectives’ commission, launched last week, will form part of a year-long arts programme concentrated on the dock and its environs. The programme will include an exhibition by Belgian artist Eugeen Van Mieghem at the Hugh Lane Gallery. Born in the port of Antwerp, Van Mieghem focused strongly on waterfront life in his paintings.
As a result of the open call, temporary and permanent installations will be realised in locations such as Poolbeg Lighthouse and the Half Moon Battery throughout 2017, intended to enhance the area and attract visitors through the creation of a ‘living exhibition’. The hope is to strengthen existing links between the port and the city.
Several of the sites around Dublin’s waterfront are already beloved local landmarks. With its two towering chimneys, the iconic Poolbeg Generating Station – known locally as the Pigeon House – is regularly immortalised in everything from art prints to t-shirts, while the limestone Poolbeg Lighthouse – located on the Great South Wall, one of Europe’s longest sea walls – is instantly recognisable by its bright red colouring.
Inviting proposals for innovative works in the fields of visual arts and film, the open call will be coordinated by Business to Arts, a Dublin-based charitable organisation that facilitates creative partnerships between commercial businesses and the arts. With applications being accepted until October 20, the chosen commissions will be put into action throughout next year.