RSS

Category Archives: Archives

‘Ranks’ – A New Exhibition by Limerick City Archives

Ranks

Ranks – A Limerick Industry (Exhibition)

The Limerick City Archives in collaboration with the Hunt Museum has launched a unique exhibition this evening (Tuesday) on the former Ranks Flour Mills titled Ranks A Limerick Industry.  This exhibition is a collaboration between Limerick City Archives and the Hunt Museum and is based on the stories, memories and contributions of former Ranks workers and their families.

Ranks Flour Mills and grain ships were a crucial part of Limerick life over a span of several decades and it’s legacy provides an excellent example of life and work in Limerick’s recent past.

Through interpretative panels, installations, photographs, documents, industrial equipment and memorabilia the story of the working and social life of the Ranks workers is told. The exhibition will run from 13th March – 31st May 2012 at the Hunt Museum on Rutland St.

The acquisition of the Limerick Mills by Ranks in 1930 was hugely controversial as Ranks was a British company. However the company grew to the biggest or second biggest flour mill in the state during the Emergency. The mill gained further profitability during the 1960s but in the 1970s the company began to lose market share as Ireland’s accession to the EEC opened up the Irish flour market to cheap imports.  Rank eventually closed in 1983.

An Oral History Project was organised with the assistance of Mary Immaculate College, staff and students. Through a series of interviews Limerick City Council sought to record the experiences of those employed by Ranks.

City Archivist, Jacqui Hayes said “Over the past year Limerick City Council have conducted a series of oral history interviews and received material from former Ranks workers including an old wheat shovel, an old bastible for baking bread, a clock that was a given as a retirement present & even a high Nelly bicycle!”

Ranks reached into every home in Ireland with its products and advertisements. Its marketing strategy and brand awareness made it a recognisable household name. Traditionally Ranks was regarded as a good place to work, one that paid good wages, even contractors or casual workers were relatively well paid.

From an early date the Shannon Mills offered their employees benefits that few other workers locally or nationally received including the introduction of a pension scheme in 1947.

Tony Clohessy, a former employee remembers, “It was a happy-go-lucky place. Industrial relations were very good compared to other places a lot of companies around town were bad- never strikes there-everything was negotiated- the management contributed to the atmosphere- it was all first names unless you wanted it otherwise…Ranks was different- a pleasure.”

Future plans for the Ranks story are already in place. The City’s Archives commitment is to not just to record and preserve the people’s history but to bring our heritage to as wide an audience as possible. Alongside the publication of a book- the archives are opening a website dedicated to Ranks history and in co-operation with the Hunt Museum will host an exhibition dedicated to the Limerick Mills.

For more information or to enquire about guided exhibition tours, school workshops and lunchtime lectures please contact The Hunt Museum contact the Hunt Museum on +353 61 312833.

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on March 21, 2012 in Archives, Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Out of the Archive – and on to the Stage

'Out of the Archive'

If the return of Iceland’s least popular export – volcanic ash clouds – doesn’t interfere then it would be well worth your while taking a jaunt across the Irish Sea to the International Samuel Beckett Conference taking place at the University of York. Out of the Archive is more of a festival than a conference and celebrates the legacy of Beckett and his reputation as one of the greatest of modernist playwrights. This legacy is of course lauded by all those who saw original works by Beckett, those who still marvel at new and engaging representations of Beckett’s work and who read his works, plays and letters and those who study the extensive repertoire of Beckett’s life.

What sets this conference apart is its focus on that unique aspect to any writers legacy: and this is the archive. The collection of manuscripts created and collected by Beckett and preserved by archive services allow for an interaction with the finest elements of Beckett’s character, psyche and thoughts. To the researcher, the archive is the single greatest asset and allows an unprecedented access to what has gone before and allows for the development of original research and thought.

The conference itself is described in the following:

“Samuel Beckett’s is one of the last great modernist archives. A vast, slowly emerging body of archival materials is enabling a “thick description” that details Beckett’s transformation of modern literature. Revised or previously unreleased texts, adaptations of unfamiliar works, and the recent publication of his arresting letters have revealed unsuspected reading habits and writing methods, and documented his immersion in specific intellectual and political contexts. This increasingly historical and empirical vision of Beckett seems at odds with the timelessness and universality presumed in earlier accounts of his work. “Out of the Archive” probes the implications of this contradiction by thoroughly reassessing Beckett’s oeuvre.”

The conference features talks by invited guests, academic papers, exhibitions and performances. Some of the literary and theoretical heavyweights who will be speaking at the conference include Nobel Prize winning J. M. Coetzee, Booker prize winning John Banville, photographer John Minihan and publisher of many of Beckett’s works John Calder.

'Out of the Archive'

Highlights of talks from a series of academics include Dr. Sinéad Mooney (National University of Ireland, Galway), “Beckett, Translation, and the ‘Grey Canon’”, Julie Bates (Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland), “Beckett’s Greatcoats: Paternal Museums”, Elsa Baroghel (University of Oxford, UK), “The Source and the Draft: An Insight into Beckett’s Dramatic Technique”, Anastasia Deligianni (Université Paris VIII, France), “Beckett, The Archetypal Archivist”, Dr. Rina Kim (University of Auckland, New Zealand), “Beyond the Archive: The Case of Beckett’s ‘Psychology Notes’”,  Prof. David Pattie (University of Chester, UK), “‘The following precious and illuminating material…’: Beckett Studies and the Archive”, Dr. Dirk Van Hulle (University of Antwerp, Belgium), “Modern Manuscripts: Samuel Beckett’s works between completion and incompletion”.

These are only a few of the incredible gathered body of speakers that will be present over this four day conference that will cover and discuss the themes of Manuscripts, Translation, Music, Cinema, Philosophy, Alternative Archives, Digital Archives, Politics, Beckett’s finished and unfinished notes and notebooks and myriad other topics.

For further information and full details of the conference visit the website http://www.outofthearchive.com/ and follow the conference on Twitter @beckettfestival

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on May 27, 2011 in Archives, Books, Culture, Theatre

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

The Abbey Theatre of 1904 brought back to life

A fascinating project was recently brought to my attention by @Marlalbur (who themselves have an excellent blog on Irish cultural history) An initiative by King’s College London historian, Hugh Denard, with Trinity College Dublin’s Long Room Hub & Irish digital graphics company, NOHO, The Abbey Theatre 1904 project is a project where the interior of the original Abbey Theatre, as used by the Irish National Theatre Society in 1904 is being digitally recreated in 3-D.

This painstakingly challenging and detailed task will for the first time bring to life the auditorium, the stage and more than just an impression of what was a birthing pool for theatre in Ireland. The Abbey was of course a National Theatre before there was even an Irish state. It was revolutionary for such a theatre to be state funded at the turn of the twentieth century. It was unheard of anywhere else in the world. Now, through the project website and blog, you can follow the progress as the Abbey of 1904 is recreated and visualised.

The project’s designers say of their work so far: “The task of digitally visualising the Abbey Theatre as designed by Joseph Holloway poses many challenges. Holloway’s architectural plans and drawings fortunately survive in the National Library of Ireland, and we have several black-and-white photographs of the early Abbey. However, it is more difficult to obtain detailed information about textiles, colour-schemes, and fixtures and fittings originally employed, as well as the less photogenic but functionally important backstage areas” 

“Because there will inevitably be gaps and contradictions in the historical information available to us, it becomes crucial to open the doors to the interpretative process so that the decisions we are making can be freely observed.”

The blog excellently chronicles the extricate research necessary and the time taken to sort through and pin point resources at various archives and institutions such as the National Library of Ireland, the Irish Architectural archive, British Pathe Film archives and many more. Videos outline the 3-D visualisation processes and blog articles describe visits to the Abbey Theatre’s own archive.

This is definetly a project to bookmark and keep an eye on as it unfolds. It shows how theatre history and theatre archives can be embraced and revitalised with the right idea and right technical knowhow. As the Abbey has entered its second century and still continues to grow and evolve, its roots and origins will not be forgotten.

Follow the Abbey Theatre 1904 project blog here and on Twitter @OldAbbeyDigital

 
 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Follow an Archive!

 

Follow an Archive

 

 

Embracing the world of archives and research is getting easier and easier thanks to the online presence and social media presence of archive and library services. Today’s “Follow an Archive Day” is a world-wide initiative that allows readers and users of archives of all levels, disciplines and interests to engage with local, national or international repositories.

For all you tweeters, go online and look up your Irish repositories on Twitter and drop them a line with any thoughts, ideas and let them know you’re out there!! For all you archivists put #followanarchive in your tweets!

For more information on Irish archives and links to Irish and international repositories visit http://www.learnaboutarchives.ie

http://followanarchive.blogspot.com/

 

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 12, 2010 in Archives

 

Tags: , , ,

Round up of news and events: 9 November 2010

  • Purpleheart theatre company, in association with the Focus theatre present the European premiere of Men of Tortuga at the Pembroke Street based Focus theatre. Written by Jason Wells. “Highly original and blisteringly relevant, Men of Tortuga exposes the barbarism encoded in corporate bureaucracy and is tailor-made for the age of terrorism, surveillance and corrupt global organizations”.

http://www.focustheatre.ie/?page_id=480 http://tiny.cc/vk1z7

 

  • Limerick’s refurbished Belltable theatre will reopen to the public with a performance of Anything but Love, written by Mary Coll. The play opens on 29 November. The winter and Spring season at the Belltable has many highlights including children’s Christmas tale The Fourth Wise Man presented by Johnny Hanrahan, Rabbit Hole written by David Lindsay-Abaire and presented by the Quarry Players and The Mai written by Marina Carr and presented by Changing Times theatre company. Download the new programme of upcoming events at the Belltable here.                        www.belltable.ie http://www.quarryplayers.ie/ http://www.changingtimestheatre.ie/

 

  • Following on from the success of Follow a Museum Day and Follow a Library Day on Twitter, November 12th is the next day to mark on your Twitter event calendar. Follow an Archive Day will be a useful imitative for archive services to promote their on line presence and forge links and relationships with new users and other organisations. For all you need to know on Follow an Archive Day go to http://www.archivesnext.com/?p=1699

 

  • Dublin’s Smock Alley theatre will host the new production by the young and interesting Company D theatre company.

    Company D's "Oedipus" at Smock Alley

    Their production of Oedipus at the stone walled and winding Boys School space at Smock Alley should be one to catch. With David Scott at the helm this company is always worth catching.   http://www.companyd.ie/ http://www.smockalley.com/theatre/

 

  • This past Saturday saw the “1916 and After” symposium held at the Moore Institute at NUI Galway and in conjunction with Trinity College, Dublin and Queens University, Belfast. A host of guest speakers include Brian O Conchubhair (University of Notre Dame) Mary Daly (University College Dublin) Nicholas Allen (NUI Galway) and Catriona Crowe of the National Archives of Ireland made the event a hugely engaging and successful commentary and assessment of the legacy of 1916, its causes and effects.

    1916 and After

    Two more symposiums will take place on Saturdays of 13th and 20th of November at Trinity College Dublin and Queens University Belfast respectively. Be sure not to miss.http://www.nuigalway.ie/mooreinstitute/site/view/773/

 

  • In Cork, a programme of Civic Events to Commemorate the 90TH Anniversary of the Deaths of Former Lord Mayors MacCurtain and McSwiney and of the Burning of Cork. For a programme of events see: http://corkheritage.ie/?page_id=348
  • Today sees the Theatre Forum Ireland-organised Open Space event hosted at NUI Galway Bailey Allen Hall. Theatre professionals from all over Ireland will meet to discuss the future for the performing arts. Though unfortunately could not make the event, Staged Reaction is anxiously awaiting feedback and will keep you posted. For more information see:   http://tiny.cc/b8l85

 

  • As Bank of Ireland’s sale of key works from Ireland’s artist heritage continues to stir controversy and comment, one of the featured artists, the modernist Louis le Brocquy will be paid homage at Dun Laoighre’s Pavillion theatre. Cold Dream Colour celebrates the life and work of this masterful artist in an evening of dance inspired
    by his paintings. Artistic Director, Morleigh Steinberg, brings together an international company of dancers and choreographers, including Liz Roche and Oguri, to create this new  production on the occasion of le Brocquy’s birthday. Original music by The Edge of U2 and Feltlike with Paul Chavez has been composed especially for the event. For more information see: http://tiny.cc/zqq86
  • John Boyne

    Ireland Literature Exchange in association with Culture Ireland, UNESCO City of Literature and the Arts Council/An Chomhairle Ealaíon present a talk by novelist John Boyne as part of the ‘In Other Words’ series, which discusses translated Irish Literature in Irish libraries. Dublin City Public Library, ILAC Centre, D1.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 9, 2010 in Archives, Culture, History

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

New archival resource guide for Smock Alley Theatre

A new research guide has been published on-line detailing an extensive catalogue of archival and reference sources for the exceptional Smock Alley theatre in Dublin’s historic Templebar. The guide comes as a new website has been launched specifically for Smock Alley. Prior to this, Smock Alley was placed only within the Gaiety School of Acting’s website. The Gaiety School, under the direction of Patrick Sutton and management of Niamh Byrne retains ownership and management of the spaces and buildings of Smock Alley.

Opened in 1662 by the Scottish John Ogilvy, Smock Alley is one of the oldest theatres of it’s kind in Europe. It is celebrated as one of the great English language and post-Restoration theatres and flourished in the late 17th century. Within its management, designers and repertoire of actors it can boast Thomas Sheridan, Colley Cibber, Peg Woffington, Spranger Barry, Louis de Val, Charles Macklin, Richard Brinsley-Sheridan and many others.

Smock Alley grew and developed its own very rich reputation as a place of immense spectacles, colourful performances and rich history. The building, more recently known as SS Michael and John’s church, has been completely redeveloped and a full archaeological examination has unearthed original structures, walls and vaults. Smock Alley has now been restored to much of its former glory and mystic but even more exciting developments lie ahead. It is envisioned to reinstate the main auditorium to fit the design of the original Smock Alley theatre while also maintaining the black-box studio space and utilize the amazing spaces of the Boys and Girls School adjacent.

Smock Alley is running full time as one of the most exciting and challenging theatre spaces in Dublin. It is a cultural asset beyond measure in value and provides an experience for actor, director, designer and audience member that they will long struggle to forget. A recent production, Knives in Hens, by Landmark productions is one such production that will live long in the memory for those lucky enough to see this powerful and striking production. Smock Alley regularly stages works and participated in various festivals and city-wide cultural events.

Scene from “Knives in Hens” by Landmark productions at Smock Alley.

The guide to the archival sources for Smock Alley is an extremely beneficial tool to any researcher of Irish theatre or social and urban history of Dublin. The guide contains a detailed written history of Smock Alley, a listing and archive/library call numbers of plays and play texts that were produced by the numerous playwrights of Smock Alley, original posters from Smock Alley productions, newspapers which carried coverage and reports and general text and reference books on Smock Alley and on Irish and international theatre of the period. The guide can be downloaded in full from the Smock Alley website along with the full archaeological report and media and press coverage.

http://smockalley.com/theatre/

www.gaietyschool.com

 

Tags: , , ,

Examining the Project Arts Centre Archive

The Irish history blog, Pue’s Occurences, has published an article detailing the history and archive of the Project Arts Centre. The article discusses the processes of archiving a performance and artistic archive and its value to Irish cultural history. 

http://puesoccurrences.wordpress.com/2010/05/12/building-an-archive-the-project-arts-centre/

The Project Arts Centre is one of Ireland’s most important and contemporary arts venues in Ireland and has been so since its insception in 1966 and continues to promote and develope new and emerging Irish artists, playwrights, actors and dancers. The archive is a vital addition to the documented heritage of Irish culture and is  housed in the Manuscripts Department of the National Library of Ireland.

Full details on the archive are available via the article on Pue’s Occurances and via the National Library of Ireland.

 

Tags: , ,