Dublin Selected *126

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We're not going lie to you. We felt old this week.

It was probably the work experience guy's fault. He didn't mean it of course. It's not as if he rocked in on the first day, free from the directionless doss that is Transition Year, and produced a laptop that made ours look like museum pieces on purpose.

I'm sure his 18km round trip from home to the office was a daily cinch to him and he wasn't showing off either. The speed and efficiency with which he did every task we gave him was in no way a reflection of our ineptitude either.

No, it was simply a case of any schoolkid who knows of and then approaches le cool for a work placement obviously has it in spades to begin with. So, we'll be taking full credit for work experience boy's good character and honest work ethic.

And a hat tip to St Declan's College, Cabra. Where it's quite clear the future leaders of the country are being taught. Albeit in prefabs.

Who is more Alma Halliwell than Alma Mater this week? Ciaran, Michael, Kate Frances or Conor. With thanks to Camille and Neil.

'It is the largest painting I've made for some time.' - David Booth
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February 09 2012


where
Copper House Gallery, Off Synge Street, Dublin 8


when
10am to 5pm

how much
Free

exhibition
ReViewed by Seán Hillen

You'll often hear people talking up shows that offer "a new perspective" on an artist's career, but in the case of this innovative exhibition of Sean Hillen's work it's literally true. By employing the same kind of top of the range scanner that's used by the Vatican library (I've seen it in action and this thing is a serious bit of kit) the gallery's team have been able to enlarge the artist's previously diminutive collages to full on wall-owning scale. Blown up to this size, Hillen's surreal pop-cultural juxtapositions are more striking than ever before, but the real surprise is the emphasis this places on the imperfections of the original works. A close inspection of any of the pieces reveals a host of hurried cuts, jagged edges and contrasting textures which speak to the honest artificiality of the artist's method. / Conor McDevitt

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February 09 2012


where
The Bernard Shaw, 11-12 South Richmond Street, Portobello, Dublin 2.
Location Map

when
8pm

how much
Free

screening
R.Kelly Appreciation

“Seven o’clock in the mornin’ and the rays from the sun wakes me...” It’s safe to say that Chicago native, Robert Sylvester Kelly, is not your average R&B singer. From his extremely dubious reputation to more than occasional brushes with the law, there is also no doubting his prodigious hit-making capability. So when it came to making this epic, sprawling mess-terpiece of what he himself described as a ‘hip-hopera’, you knew he was taking his audience into uncharted territory. Containing 22 chapters or songs of roughly similar structure and melody, R. Kelly weaves a narrative as bonkers as anything ever committed to tape. He recently announced he had written 32 additional chapters, but is in need of financial backing to get them made. So go see if this musical oddity deserves further episodic tales of bizarro amour. / Simon Judge
 

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February 09 2012


where
The Lab, Dublin City Council Arts Office, Foley Street, Dublin 1
Location Map

when
Until March 3rd

how much
Free

exhibition
Undertow

There's plenty flowing beneath the surface in this exhibition of work from both established and emerging artists. From Veronica Nicholson's evocative neon sign that draws you in, to Ali Kirby's installation of found objects that play with gender issues, sexual power and the perception of the feminine. Karin Lindholm's grotesquely distorted but bright and colourful self portraits both repel and attract, not unlike the work of Cindy Sherman, while Padraig Robinson's video depicts an abandoned private sex club in Berlin, the spaces empty but heavy and suggestive of an active history. And if you like 'dags', you should be drawn to Paul Hallanhan's video piece based on Alan Ginsberg's poem Howl. Undertow features the work of eleven artists in all from the Ormston House Project in Limerick where the show debuted. ' Hayley Reynolds

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February 09 2012


where
Peacock Theatre, Lower Abbey Street, Dublin 1.
Location Map

when
8pm (ends Sat.)

how much
€13-€25

theatre
I ♥ Alice ♥ I

I ♥ Alice ♥ I  tells the tale of a now aging couple in familiar suburban Dublin who appear conventional in every respect bar they are both women. It debuted at the fringe festival in 2010 before graduating to the grown-up theatre festival proper the following year, and it appears now on the smaller stage of the national theatre. The performances display the confident ease born of the reprise of a successful production. In a clever play on theatrical form, both Alices address the audience directly on the subject of the play's creation at opening before going on to tell the story of their lives together amid plenty of note-perfect humorous cultural references before changing gears and moving to a surprisingly heartfelt even polemic conclusion. Win Tickets / Joe Buck

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February 10 2012


where
The Twisted Pepper, 54 Middle Abbey Street, Dublin 1.
Location Map

when
10pm

how much
€12-€15

gig
Ms Dynamite

Ms. Dynamiteee-heee is a MOBO queen and Mercury prize-winning artist, a grime innovator from the So Solid generation who's back with a vengeance after a squiffy few years of highly mysterious 'will they or won't they happen' album rumours; having recently hooked up with the young girl about town Katy B and those three dubstep dudes Magnetic Man, she is the soundtrack of the hour once again. She'll be rockin' the Twisted Pepper with Champion DJ - UK funksters, as well as some of our own finest  party-starters such as Lakker and PCP keeping the night going. So Kaboogie on down to Kaboogie's sixth birthday (you're a big boy now!) with or without a Caterpillar cake...they're bringing you hot new music of a high calibre on the regular, so it's probably time to say thanks by partying on down... Win Tickets / Kate Frances Coleman

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February 10 2012


where
The Joinery, 6 Rosemount Terrace, Arbour Hill
Location Map

when
8pm

how much
€8 BYOB

gig
Great Lakes Mystery/Magic Pockets

There's no great mystery to why you should go to this. Garrett Averill proves that drummers are more than the butt of muso's jokes with his GLM project and its particularly brilliant brand of spiralling, sprightly layered electronica. Previously with Jape and Valerie Francis (among others), Averill's rich compositions oscillate and excite. Sometimes you feel you are at the edge of a Tron-designed world, at others you are stuck late night in graveyard for analogue machines. My own favourite GLM tune being this one, which was part of the “Hill Street” documentary which looked at the evolution of skateboarding culture in Dublin since the late 1980′s. Also billed tonight are Magic Pockets. No jokes, no mystery, just brilliant tunes. / Vernon Steel 

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February 10 2012


where
Project Arts Centre, 39 East Essex St, Dublin 2.
Location Map

when
5:30

how much
Free - but book!

interactive
Love Sucks

There are two types of people to be found out in Dublin on Valentine's - the loved up and the ones that think that Love Sucks. But we'll wager you'll enjoy this event no matter which team you're on. Two fun games will be hosted in Temple Bar by Make and Do. For the smartphone owner, there's Peoplehunt by Crowdscanner - digital games that make social media, well, actually social. However if your phone's IQ is not up to the task, fear not, the second game, Love at First Sight, centres on some old-school paper hats. Yes, paper. From the pre-i-Phone era... Love Sucks promises to be a seduction free, silly event. Free in, but get your tickets at the venue in advance, they'll be gone faster than pigs around angry birds. / Rachel Lucy Ray

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February 11 2012


where
Irish Film Institute, 6 Eustace St, Temple Bar, Dublin 2
01 679 3477
Location Map

when
1.20pm

how much
€5.20-€8.90

screening
The Last Waltz

Apologists for the joyless honking onanism of Swindon's got talent/X factory etc would do well to catch a screening of Scorsese's magisterial, epoch-defining film. It documents the final live performance of The Band, that collection of prodigiously talented dudes who once backed Dylan. In what is perhaps the greatest concert movie ever made, Robbie Robertson & Co are joined on stage by a roll-call of the most important musicians of their generation. Expect bravura performances, with highlights including a gak-addled Neil Young and Van Morrison sporting a burgundy loon-panted disco suit. Songs to beat the band, a true tour de force. / Mr & Mrs Stevens

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February 11 2012


where
The Sugar Club, Lower Leeson Street, Dublin 2
01 678 7188
Location Map

when
11pm

how much
€10

gig
Beautiful Swimmers

Following a hoopla-filled Horse Meat Disco, Fatty Fatty & Radiomade are once again ganging up to showcase tropical funksters Beautiful Swimmers. The DC twosome combine house and funk, delivering it through a warm amoebic haze. While they shimmer and glow they are not afraid to be cheeky – their O Yea video takes lycra modelling to another level (making an American Apparel ad look like M&S offering). Big Coast is so lush you have to remember to come up for air while Give it All You Got will help you channel your inner Tony Montana. Also riding the wave are Dogs (recent Best Irish Act nominees at the Irish Festival Awards), loop maestro Kev Sheridan as well as Fatty Fatty residents to keep the night floating along nicely. With so much going down who knows what might bubble to the surface? Win Tickets / Rachel Hegarty

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February 11 2012


where
Smock Alley Theatre, Temple Bar, Dublin 2.
Location Map

when
6.30pm

how much
€10/€12 (see website for festival details)

theatre
Trainee (Collaborations)

If you're looking to stir something other than your pacemaker at some of the current theatre fare (Da, Big Maggie and Bookworms), the newly formed Jack Burdell Experience may have the answer with Collaborations, this series of 14 one act plays and works in development. On Tuesday evening, a serving of three 20 minute pieces threw up Trainee as an exceptional piece of new writing by David Fennelly and Jennifer Barrett. The story of a jaded shoe shop worker, it crisply captures the seasonal slump - "after Christmas things die down" - with forlorn future prospects. Contrasting the sparky hopes of the job-hunter (recent UCD Communications graduate) with the resignation of the dreary and entrapped incumbent, Trainee's Henry Street observations are finely honed with Fennelly brilliantly embodying the deadweight humdrum uncertainty of the now for many. Win Tickets / Michael McDermott

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February 11 2012


where
King 7 Bar and Restaurant, 122 Capel Street Dublin 1


when
Screening 8pm

how much
Admission €5 before 11pm, €8 after

screening
The Harder They Come

Never bet on the favourite in a three horse race. You can drink yourself sober on gin. Never let the truth get in the way of a good story and...the harder they come, the harder they fall. Universal truths, one and all. Before there was Bob (Marley) there was Jimmy Cliff. In this 30-year-old cult classic Cliff is Ivan Martin; a guy from the country with no education; young, impoverished but ambitious. He's a renegade, he's gonna make it. "I want mine, and I want it tonight!" This movie was the primer for the Jamaican experience, introducing reggae to a world that was hitherto occupied by smooth soul and heavy rock. And, lord! The soundtrack! Cliff's beautifully pleading voice on the titular track is the most famous, but add in Many Rivers to Cross, Pressure Drop and Johnny Too Bad and you realise why this had such an impact. / Vernon Steel

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February 11 2012


where
Irish Film Institute, 6 Eustace St, Temple Bar, Dublin 2
01 679 3477
Location Map

when
4:20pm, 8:50pm

how much
€5.20-€8.90

cinema
Casablanca

Even if you haven’t seen Casablanca, you’ll somehow still know all the lines; like unconsciously singing along to a Beatles record. Set in a war-time Casablanca where guns are not the real weapons, Humphrey Bogart plays Rick, a world weary ex-freedom fighter looking to cut the ties from the world he used to live in, especially from his one-time love Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman). When his cosy, cynical world is destroyed when she walks into his bar one evening, Rick has not only to decide whether to help Ilsa, but also whether he has to let her go. Once you move past the famous quotes, there is a story lurking here that has all the realism of an art house flick, while still having popcorn moments Spielberg would be proud of. At the film's heart though is separation; from friends, from causes, from lovers. A genuine classic. / Hugh Torpey

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February 11 2012


where
Whelan's, 25 Wexford Street, Dublin 2
Location Map

when
8pm

how much
€6


Jaime Nanci and The Boys Blue Valentine

I first saw them at a burlesque show through the camera lens. After a few songs I forgot about the photo shoot I was supposed to be helping at. I dropped the camera onto my lap, and was humming along eyes closed, carried into a different time. Basked in the red light, punctuated by sophisticated drum rhythm, echoed by the singer's shadow on the wall, it was the most heart-wrenching, smooth, and intimate blues I’ve heard. This Saturday they will play a selection of old and new for those who know real love with both ecstasy and pain, not the red plastic what-nots and cheesy cards. Bring your lovers, your memories, and plenty of tissue, for Jaime, to quote Billy Holiday, “can sing this song so blue, that you will cry despite of you…” / Nadia Gativa

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February 11 2012


where
Temple Bar Gallery & Studios, Temple Bar, Dublin 2
Location Map

when
11am-6pm

how much
Free

exhibition
Bit Symphony - Liam O'Callaghan

Liam O'Callaghan has formed a band, of sorts. He has piled together turntables, amps and speakers to create a giant looping machine which reconfigures and manipulates sounds by physically warping records or scratching and scraping them. It's a novel audio-visual experience that's better heard than seen but still delivers on the interest front. The audio loop begins as a ticking, then intensifies, adding a variety of beats, riffs and melodies. The music created is hypnotic and engaging, but don't expect this retro robotic orchestra to get a booking at Manumission any time soon. This is art, baby. O'Callaghan uses discarded objects and challenges people to find meaning and worth in them. Not unlike a band leader who reckons the guys have one more big gig in them. / Neil Daly 

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February 12 2012


where
The Bernard Shaw, 11-12 South Richmond Street, Portobello, Dublin 2.
Location Map

when
12pm

how much
Free

gig
Blondes

Zach Steinman and Sam Haar’s slow-burning, meditative house music puts aural pleasure ahead of dancefloor participation. It’s not that Blondes’ euphoric jams deliberately eschew the joys of crowd-pleasing barnburners, they are instead creating a different experience, the sort of blissed-out, astral plane-wandering pleasure of zoning out. Performed and recorded on a flurry of analogue synths, the Brooklyn duo’s live show is a freewheeling ambient journey. Their new self-titled debut album has been receiving high praise for its unassuming approach – a lush but uncomplex mix of bright synth washes and inviting beats. Perhaps this uncluttered, primal approach is why the pr bumf felt the need to gush they were exploring ‘the concept of duality through a personal lens...focused on moving the body’. It’s just hedonism, stupid. / Mark Keane

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February 12 2012


where
The Twisted Pepper, 54 Middle Abbey Street, Dublin 1.
Location Map

when
8pm

how much
€10/12

gig
Balam Acab

A native of Pennsylvania, 20 year-old producer Alec Koone emerged in 2010 with the release of his first material as Balam Acab, the See Birds EP. With its densely textured soundscapes, formed with found sounds, he had created some of the most original and captivating ambient music of recent years. Koone cites Animal Collective and Pavement as his biggest inspirations, yet it’s the likes of Boards Of Canada and Third Eye Foundation which most spring to mind as contemporaries to his stunningly realised alien music. Last year saw the release of his first full-length album Wander / Wonder, a gorgeous work of stately, cinematic electronica. The album has a unique underwater quality which deepens its ethereal sensuality. Last Autumn Koone debuted his Balam Acab live show in the US, featuring live female vocals and revamped versions of his songs. Win TicketsDarragh Purcell

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February 13 2012


where
Screen Cinema, D'Olier Street, Dublin 2.
Location Map

when
8:40pm

how much
€5-€8.60

screening
The Notebook

It's the perfect time to 'Notebook' your less efficient half...isn't it time they learnt why it's important that 'if you're a bird, I'm a bird too'? Why if you say you're going to fix up the old Windsor plantation, white with blue shutters, and a porch wrapped around the outside, it's crucial that you complete on that promise, even if the lady you're trying to impress is off canoodling with James Marsden. This is a real wallower for when you've lost all hope in men's ability to realise they're in love (cos they generally need to be told) as Ryan Gosling goes off to war, mourns his best friend, a lost love and his father...and rows a boat in the rain. Sexy. This film isn't sickly though...it's nuanced, stylish and Rachel McAdams is feisty enough to offset Gosling's masculine, but intense broken heart. /Kate Frances Coleman

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February 13 2012


where
Concourse, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, Marine Road, Dún Laoghaire.
Location Map

when
10am-5pm

how much
Free

exhibition
Source Exhibition

There is an intimacy in possessing a finely crafted, locally produced object that's unique and bespoke. Could it be, that the added value of an object and its romance lies in the story of a thing, the bit you don't see on the gallery pedestal? An understanding of its journey, conception and history? The Source Exhibition in Dun Laoghaire draws us closer to some local makers and their progeny in this vein; focusing on innovative designers and applied artists who are using craft processes and a combination of traditional and new materials and techniques. It's an opportunity to engage and explore through a series of free workshops, demonstrations, curatorial and exhibitors’ talks with calligraphy, ceramics, glass, mixed media and textiles on show. Who knows? You might come away with something memorable for your beloved. / Elish Bul-Godley

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February 14 2012


where
National Gallery of Ireland, Merrion Sq W & Clare St, Dublin 2.
Location Map

when
Until March 25th

how much
Free

exhibition
Fables and Fairytales

Ireland has always been known for its storytellers, but our mark on one group of tales is sometimes forgotten. Tucked away in a small corner of the National Gallery's Millenium Wing, I found their Fables and Fairy Tales exhibit. From evil witches and weird imps, to beautiful mermaids and princesses, this is a treat for your inner kid. The collection - although small - boasts a number of really unique illustrations from the likes of John Butler Yates and Paul Henry. My favourites however were the ones by Dubliner Harry Clarke - most famous for his beautiful intricate stained glass works, found all around the city. Clarke's princesses are decked in the most intricate jewels and seashells - Barbie, eat your heart out. We only wish there was more. / Rachel Lucy Ray

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February 14 2012


where
Temple Bar,


when
Various, see programme

how much
Depends, see programme


A Date with Dublin

We consider ourselves Romantics, but the prospect of participating in a Hallmark endorsed version of Valentine's Day leaves us as cold as a couple of chill-cabinet dinners. Even so, it seems churlish not to mark the day somehow. Thanks to Temple Bar Cultural Trust, we now have a list as long as our (very long) arms of wonderful alternatives. Promising to tickle our fontal lobes and stroke our cerebellums. 'A Date With Dublin' is a programme of cultural events from Book Speed Dating to Gallery tours encompassing dance, theatre, art, film and more. We've booked tickets to see 'Once' outdoors on Meeting House Square. Bring a lover, a friend or your lovely self and discover the romance of Dublin afresh. / Mr & Mrs Stevens

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February 15 2012


where
Project Arts Centre, 39 East Essex St, Dublin 2.
Location Map

when
8pm

how much
€10/€15/€20

theatre
Goddess of Liberty

This debut play from actor turned writer Karen Ardiff, set in an Alaskan mining town during the gold rush, features an all female cast. Frankie, a famous actress renowned for her Goddess of Liberty dance, a shadow of her former self following a stroke; May, her long time friend and companion who cares for her; T-Belle, May's headstrong daughter; and Nellie, a local good time girl who is desperate to get out of town. All four women have secrets and regrets, and their fates are intertwined as they try to ensure a payout from a deal Frankie did prior to illness. While all the actors give brilliant performances, Megan Riordan who has amazing presence in her scenes as Nellie. A fantastic tale of loyalty, misunderstanding and redemption, this will strike a chord with anyone who's ever had a close female relationship. / Frances Winston

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February 15 2012


where
No Grants Gallery (NGG), 12 East Essex St. D2
Location Map

when
11am-5pm

how much
Free

exhibition
Instagram Exhibition

This exhibition is the first of its kind in Dublin. 60 images, whittled down from 1200 captured through Instagram: ‘Your Photos, Your World, Shared’ presents the virtual world that this i-Phone app has created...Instagram users submitted their photos for the chance to be featured in this exhibition, so the exhibition features a wide variety of themes ... wildlife (cats), landscapes (look out your window), personalities ('characters'), moods (stressed, have you met i-Phone users?), and architecture. Other photographs focused on more creative subjects, Adrian + Shane, two graffiti artists, captured images of themselves at work.  The work is creative and of high standard, so seeing as the app was made for amateur photographers, there's hope for us all!

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where
U Bar, 13 High Street Christchurch Dublin 7


when
Regular opening hours.

how much
Pint of Heineken €4.50

le other
U Bar

For anyone else who spent their teenage years drinking in garden sheds, this place will bring a sentimental tear to your eye. Replace the dodgy stools with artfully crafted chipboard booths, your mates random attempts at graffiti with artists' renderings and the weird guy drooling in the corner with a moustached hipster, and you have the right idea. Think upmarket shed - homey, casual, and with a lot less splinters. This music/art/dancing/lounging venue is the brainchild of a bunch of creative types and sets the scene perfectly for a sneaky midweek pint, vinyl swap, cans film festival or mad weekend. We all know a few drinks gets our creative juices flowing, but how did none of us come up with these while our hands were bloody freezing to bits in those sheds? / Sarah Maguire

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where
Capel Street
Dublin 1

when
Regular pub hours

how much
Depends on beverage

le other
The Black Sheep

For a country known for its love of beer, my own experience of Ireland has been somewhat marred by a lack of decent beer options. Porterhouse, Gingerman and Against the Grain certainly all take their brew seriously, but I was without a Northside option for a decent tipple until last week when the owners of Against the Grain went and opened a lovely pub on Capel Street with a staggering 23 craft beers on tap and loads more in bottles. These guys know beer. The bartenders can talk hops and flavour notes with you all night long.  Line your stomach with amazing freshly cut chips accompanied by pumpkin dip...and I'm not gonna lie...the burgers looked lovely. Given the great tables, warm after work feel, and board game collection, there is every possibility I will just stop off for one a day till I've tried every beer.  / Sarah Murphy

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Rob and Jeremy - Puff Daddies

le cool talks to Rob and Jeremy of Pufferfish, a new online community for independent artists in Ireland.

It started when we were at a talk about the arts in the current economy and we got thinking that there wasn't any focused outlet for independent arts in this country. We're filmmakers and there's no real space to show your work and it's tough to find people to collaborate with outside of your own circles.

So the idea came from there of setting up a web network for indie artists of all kinds to help them connect with each other and their local communities and industries. Basically the aim is to give them a launchpad to get their work out and seen. And these days the arts are all intermingling so we wanted to create a site that reflected that.

We're setting it up as a not for profit but the long term model is to get some kind of sponsorship and then we're looking into moving into live events. The main thing it to get it out there, get people involved and get it to a stage where it's possible for it to sustain itself.

Get connected and collaborating at pufferfish.ie                                 PHOTO: Con O'Donoghue