Jan 29th ~ Feb 2nd
The drive from Wexford was uneventful, a good start. I’d rang ahead to the B&B about parking before I checked in and lo and behold, I get the last spot. If I get anymore good fortune I’ll get paranoid. Grand parade is a brisk 10 minute walk or 15 minute stroll. My compatriots are assembled in the foyer, soon after we’re whisked upstairs for our official welcoming. After a quick introduction from Trish Brennan we get a breakdown of the modules and credits and an outline of semester 1 from Lucy, Ailbhe and Colin. The student body has 11 components, 9 females units and two male units. First impressions are good impressions, I get the feeling from this group that great compromises, lots of effort and feats of resolve have brought us all here today. I went ahead of the group up to the college to partake of the good canteen food that had been recommended to us earlier then waited at the main entrance for the rest of our group, as I watched the students mill about I mused about my old student acquaintances from Dun Laoghaire that had studied here after our Foundation year in 1986/7, John Risi and Rod Coyne spring to mind. I’m still in contact with Rod, I wonder what came of John. There are two other IT Carlow alums with us; Breda & Anne. We may be able to devise our own little support mechanism since we all hail from Wexford. The tour of the Crawford building evoked more Dun Laoghaire nostalgia, I commented to Breda & Anne that now they’d see what a real Art School looked like since the facilities were pretty basic at the Wexford Art Campus and it didn’t have the legacy or history that Crawford has.
On Tuesday our practice presentations were held in the upstairs lecture hall, I’d put together what I thought was a decent impression of my recent work and I noticed that most of the other students had interpreted the presentation a bit more loosely than mine. I got so engrossed in watching them that I got a bit panicked when I realised I was last to go, unfortunately I stammered and stuttered through it, completely forgot all my notes and messed up my slides. I suppose presentation is a muscle that atrophies without exercise since I became reasonably good at it by my 4th undergrad year.
We got our first text from Lucy for the Situations Module, Chapter one of Ranciere’s The Ignorant Schoolmaster for next week’s discussion in Grande Parade. We have a choice of any text from any book of the Whitechapel Documents of Contemporary Art series for a short research presentation the week after. It doesn’t look like I’ll make it to any of the Blog workshops coming over the next two Thursdays with the work schedule In Garryhill. Maybe I can make at least one of the Inductions pencilled in for Wednesdays. Not really what I had planned for my first week of the MA or my 50th birthday for that matter but at least I got here.
Wednesday to Friday: Garryhill