Artist Visit: Colm & Tonya
In March 2016, the Center hosted two visiting artists Colm Clarke and Tonya McMullan for 10 days as part of the Ireland: the other side, A Week on Northern Ireland programming.
About the Artists:
Colm Clarke is an artist based in Belfast, Northern Ireland creating actions, sonic scores and situations. Colm develops his approach as a tactile strategy with collaboration, humor and interventions. Colm is a member of Queen Street Studios and Beyond performance collective.
Tonya McMullan, also based in Belfast, is an artist who focuses on the exploration of everyday life through participatory and performative interactions and interventions. Tonya uses personal experiences and autobiographical references as material to make work that explores her environment and its confines in an attempt to both challenge and touch the participant/viewer.
Colm Clarke and Tonya McMullan (CCTM) work collaboratively as artists, curators and urban farmers. These projects are site specific and responsive, including one day curatorial projects like ‘cache’ 2014 to the domestic installation ‘surrender yourself’ 2013. The latest venture for CCTM is infinity farm, a new project connecting people and herbs in Belfast through urban agriculture, art and education workshops:
While in residence, Colm and Tonya led a two-day intensive photography workshop with high school art students from Eastside High School exploring the role of photography and performance in our society. Looking at how we frame ourselves and the past in discussions and exercises, participants created new artwork, which were shown in the Harn Museum and will be profiled internationally.
Colm and Tonya led several workshops at the Hippodrome Theatre with members of the teen ensemble group and the Spring Break camp exploring identity by looking at personal histories and memories. The workshops resulted in a series of short performance art films and a live intervention exhibited at the Harn Museum of Art.
Colm and Tonya concluded their visit to Gainesville with a show at the Harn Museum of Art on Saturday, March 26th. They presented a proposal for a series of art interventions designed to bring diverse groups of people living in Gainesville into conversation with one another. Peripheries FM, their feature proposal, is a live broadcast radio station where members of the community will be encouraged to share their stories with one another and the broader community. The Center is currently working with Colm and Tonya to organize and finance a return semester-long visit to enable them to implement Peripheries FM.