Celina Muldoon, The Gate, or this disk of the sun will turn to the disk of the moon and our children sold for silver’


15 Mar, 2024 - 21 Apr, 2024

An installation of new work by Celina Muldoon incorporating moving image, performance and sound to develop a large scale environment within the gallery, which invites you to consider the climate emergency, global political landscape and effects of late-stage capitalism on the world we live in.

Live Performances:

5.30pm, Wednesday 20 March, Introduction given by Patrick T. Murphy, RHA Director.

5.30pm, Wednesday 10 April

5.30pm, Wednesday 17 April

All welcome. Booking not necessary

The Gate, or the disk of the sun will turn to the disk of the moon and our children sold for silver’, is a public call to action. The climate emergency, global political landscape and effects of late-stage capitalism proves we are living in a time of compounding crises. This collaborative and interdisciplinary project with Rhonda Mc Govern from the Trinity Centre for Environmental Humanities and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Clare Kelly from the Trinity Institute of Neurosciences, has arisen from a collective understanding that behavioural change in response to these issues can and must happen. We have the power to change the world and “we are hardwired to collaborate”, Dr. Clare Kelly, 2021.

The exhibition title is taken from the “Astronomical Diaries and related texts of Babylonia’’, which contain translations of cuneiform script inscribed upon ancient Babylonian clay tablets. Described as “an ancient historian’s dream [… with] data that are reliable and securely anchored in an absolute chronology”, there are over 15,000 individual weather-related observations recorded from 652 to 61 BCE. The Astronomical Diaries provide intriguing descriptions of events in which ‘The disk of the sun looked like the moon’, indicating the presence of a volcanic dust veil in ancient Babylon. The title is an adaptation of this text and acts as a warning to humanity to bring about effective change. It implores us to pass through this metaphysical gate and save ourselves from annihilation.

Borrowing from Fritz Lang’s ‘Metropolis’, the exhibition begins with a cinematic re-enactment of ‘The Eternal Gardens’ scene. A monolithic volcano behaves not only as an artistic representation of McGoverns scientific research, but acts as a time bomb, heralding imminent catastrophe. This scenography depicts the current state of things. Istar re-emerges, in the second of this trilogy of exhibitions, and rides the snake headed dragon. An intricately woven soundscape and collaboration between poet Annemarie Ni Chuireann, vocalist Sue Rynhart and composer Moritz Fasbinder, guides us through the space. During each live performance, ‘Mother Earth’ is keening through her grief while witnessing the unfolding devastation. Performing nymphs lure us towards, ‘The Gate’, a metaphorical rite of passage birthing us into a new age. Into a mycelium utopia within which we co-exist and thrive in a new world order.

Performers/nymphs: Terence McEneaney, Cindy Cummings, Rebecca Devins, Will Flanagan, Samantha O’ Reilly, Laura Grisard and Sue Rynhart. View more info here.

This exhibition is supported by a series of public talks, mindful performances and a panel discussion, see related events below.

Artist bio:

Celina Muldoon is an artist based in the Northwest of Ireland. With live performance at the core of her practice she uses moving image, installation, sound and AI to develop large scale environments within which audiences engage with the socio-political structures and the body. Muldoon has exhibited nationally and internationally and has received multiple funding awards from the Arts Council of Ireland. She has participated in prestigious international residencies including the Centre Culturel Irlandais in Paris and the International Curatorial Programme in New York.

Muldoon plans to return to New York to develop an interdisciplinary project with experts in political science, climate change and economics based in the U.S. While there, she will develop a major exhibition to be presented in New York in 2025.




Image: Celina Muldoon, The Gate, 2024, performance, moving image, installation, sound, Charlie Jo Doherty, Emmet Toner and Sarah Mc Keever, Image courtesy of the artist.

  • Date:

    15 Mar, 2024 - 21 Apr, 2024
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