Online events talks_lectures

Irish Modernisms Exploring modernism in Northern Ireland and global contexts

3D-effect geometric glittery pattern in blue hues

Grace McMurray, detail of George Michael 2018
© Grace McMurray

Join artists, architects, curators and researchers for a series of conversations exploring modernism in Northern Ireland and global contexts

CCA Derry~Londonderry invites you to an online seminar series accompanying the launch of the exhibition Irish Modernisms (29 May – 18 September 2021). Starting with the island of Ireland, the geographical reach will expand over the weeks to explore global contexts.

The exhibition and seminar series have been co-curated by Catherine Hemelryk (CCA Derry~Londonderry) and Matthew Retallick (Manchester School of Art) and the seminar series has been made possible through a bursary award from the British Art Network.

Session 1: Irish Modernisms, Wednesday 23 June, 13.00–14.30

Speakers: Dr Fionna Barber (Reader in Art History, Manchester School of Art) and Anna Liesching (Curator of Art, Ulster Museum, National Museums Northern Ireland)

Anna Liesching will talk about Irish painter Mainie Jellett and Fionna Barber about Northern Irish sculptor Deborah Brown, looking at their legacies within Irish modernism.

Session 2: Meet the Artists, Wednesday 14 July, 13.00–14.30

Hear from the artists involved in the Irish Modernisms exhibition at CCA Derry~Londonderry, including James Ashe, Rachael Campbell-Palmer, Phillip McCrilley, Grace McMurray, Laura Nelson and Ben Weir. Please see the CCA website for more information about the artists.

A pre-recorded podcast will be aired during this session and also made available in advance via iTunes, Spotify, Anchor and CCA’s website, and also as a written transcript. This will be followed by a live Q&A with the artists and an audience discussion, facilitated by curators Catherine Hemelryk and Matthew Retallick. Audience members are encouraged to listen to the podcast in advance of attending the discussion. Please note that tickets for the discussion section of this event are limited and must be booked separately. Please see further details on Eventbrite.

Session 3: Latin American Modernisms, Wednesday 4 August, 13.00–14.30

Dr Harper Montgomery (City University of New York) and Puerto Rico-based artist Jorge González will explore Latin American modernisms with a focus on craft, colonialism and how legacies of modernism inform contemporary artistic practice.

Session 4: Post-Soviet Baltic Modernisms, Wednesday 18 August, 13.00–14.30

This session explores modernism in the Soviet context and the local national Estonian context with speakers Andres Kurg and Mari Laanemets, Senior Researchers at the Institute of Art History, Estonian Academy of Arts in Tallinn.

Session 5: East African Modernisms, Wednesday 1 September, 13.00–14.30

Prof. Edward Denison (Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL) and Eritrea-born, Chicago/Montreal-based artist Dawit L. Petros will explore the distinct and often radical modernisms of Eritrea, examining the relationship between African histories and European modernism.

Online events

All events will take place via Zoom Pro. The seminars will be live captioned automatically. We are recording the presentations as audio by agreement with our speakers, but not the discussions.


23 June 2021 at 14.00–15.30

14 July 2021 at 14.00–15.30

4 August 2021 at 14.00–15.30

18 August 2021 at 14.00–15.30

1 September 2021 at 14.00–15.30