Today I want to talk about a beautiful project born in Dublin by two young artists: Sinaed Keogh and Jack Rubbit:
Soul Noir Festival of the Dark Arts: a three-day event that becomes a fixed event every year from 31 October to 2 November.
First, however, to enter the festival’s topic, we explore the subject of “dark arts”: in the late 1970’s, Punk developed a dark subculture called “Dark wave”

The Dark Wave has come to be a peculiar feature of world programming, Gothic atmospheres, melancholy and the typical spleen of Decadence.
This subculture invests every kind of artistic expression from music to visual arts, literature, theater, cinema and fashion.
The Darkwave has its culmination throughout the 1980s and 1990s, and then undergoes a slow decline while still being very active in the underground.


Soul Noir Festival of the Dark Arts

What is the Soul Noir Festival of the Dark Arts:

Emerging Festival founded in 2017 in Dublin, Ireland. it has been aimed at promoting visual artists, sculptors, painters, illustrators, musicians, sound artists, dancers and anyone with a sense of Gothic style, the macabre and whose interests all that surrounds “The Other” in Society .
The Festival offer audiences a rare and unique insight into the underground of Gothic culture which is so overlooked in the mainstream art scene.  the founders says: “Our aim is to promote these artists whose work can have a uniting platform for the rebels and dream makers pushing back against the norm. The festival is built on the premise of exhibiting high standards of work and is a non-profit organisation. We are all about fairness and equality in the arts and encourage people from all walks of life to apply, you do not need an art degree or any previous exhibition experience to be part of the festival.”

The founding principle of the festival:
* We are open to everyone and everything is free.

Audience, photo by De Es

The first edition program:

In an evocative location on the subject of the festival: a beautiful Gothic residence in the center of Dublin dating back to 1768, the Soul Noir Festival of Dark Arts took place on October 31st (Halloween night) on November 2nd: a kermesse that included a visual art show and music events, readings, art performances and dance, I mention some of the most interesting:

• Rici Ni Chleirigh performed his new performance art work titled Penelope on Halloween night.
Ricí Ní Chléirigh’s performance explores the plight of Penelope, a woman who felt compelled by her circumstances to spend her nights unravelling what she spent her days making. In Homer’s Odyssey Penelope is considered a good woman, despite the apparent madness of her behaviour, because she remains faithful to her husband during his 20 year absence.

Rici Ni Chleirigh photo by James Brady

* Isabella Oberlander has performed a movement / dance installation
title: The End
This is the end, beautiful friend, the end of things ceasing to be. Engaging with different states of decomposition, of everything that stands, this performance installation embraces endings.

* Kevin Nolan performed with guitarist Mark Ellison new material from his first album Fredrick And The Golden Dawn 6.45-8 on Halloween night. His LP was also played at a record listening station along with techno artist Core Minimal.
Kevin is a multi-instrumentalist usually performing all instruments himself as well as all vocals on his songs. Nolan is a seething cauldronful of the literary, the theatrical, and the gothically flamboyant, seasoned with a smattering of infernal burlesque.

Kevin Nolan performing. Photo by james Brady

the founders also says:

*We had some of the biggest names in Ireland including Susan MacWilliam, Pauline Cummins and Breda Lynch exhibit along with students who are still in art college. We had an international open call and had people without art degrees along with these big name artists. We had dancers to sound artists in our line up.”


Ann Ensor, Aileen Wallace, Austin Hearne, Boz Mugabe, Breda Lynch,

Chloe Brenan, Ciana Fitzgerald,  Core Minimal, Costanza Mansueti

Damien O’Reilly, Eileen Coll, Esther Raquel Minsky, Dekonstrukcione,

Dorota Borowa, Isabella Oberlander, James Sheridan, Jaime Lalor

Jessica Kelly, Jonathan Mc Nicholas, Jules Michael, Katie O’Neill,

Kevin Nolan, Laura Spark, LC Butterly, Lee Boyd, Lorraine Cross, Maija Soifa Marianna Mooney, Michelle Ryan, Mike Amern

Mirjam Schiller / Wildeharth, Niamh Coffey, Pat Byrne, Pauline Cummins Rebecca Deegan, Richi Ni Chleirigh, Roberta Fiano, Robert P. Ryan

Saidhbhin Gibson,Sean Fitzgerald, Shota Kotake, Susan Mc William

Roberta Fiano photo by James Brady

They have also unique awards for participating artists which was presented on Halloween night.

The Dark Heart award
(For the artist whose work most reflects the theme of the festival)

Best emerging artist

Best in show

Audience favourite (announced on last day of festival)

To make this event, the founders have made an online fundraising and thanks to the generosity of donors, they have been able to create this moment of culture and aggregation, giving each artist the opportunity to participate free of charge.
The importance of the network has been fundamental: advanced technology will probably be the most effective tool to emancipate the undergroound and counter the rigid closed market rules of the mainstream.

Roberta Fiano












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