Art//Culture//Events//Galway 2020


TULCA Festival of Visual Arts, Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture and Fire Station Artists Studios are delighted to announce the reopening of Deep States

The inaugural exhibition of the UnSelfing Programme, Deep States, commissioned by Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture, opened on Friday 6th March, with a schedule of performances planned to take place throughout the exhibition run. After one week, Deep States was closed because of Covid-19 and the Irish lockdown - since Deep States sought to explore the complex states of freedom and responsibility, there was something of a pathetic fallacy in this enforced sleeping beauty in a darkened Nuns’ Island Theatre.

Where the exhibition proposed the unconscious and conscious human responses as battlefields for dominance, it was separated from its audience and its artists from their performances: the outcome confuses, the battle never ends, the struggle begins again. And this, after all, is the human experience. Artists Dominic Thorpe, Veronika Merklein and Red People began their installations and planned their performances to complete the audience’s acquaintance with their work. Because of the changed world and conditions that now pertain, the artists cannot perform - this too seems to work with the world’s suspension because of the virus, however heart breaking for the artists… maybe Deep States will find resolution or maybe it is destined to never finish...

TULCA Exhibition

With the stretching of Deep States into the light as Nun's Island opens its doors after the lockdown for one week, a most human experience has played out while the exhibition slept in a deep state.

This display is curated by Helen Carey and features work by Dominic Thorpe, Veronika Merklein and Red People.

Dominic Thorpe addresses sentient information, the senses and the fault lines between what is locked in, what is manifest and what is manipulated. Through video, mixed media, photography and performance, Thorpe explores the matrix between human endurance and the senses, exploring power and vulnerability.


Veronika Merklein suggests the information presented reveals a narrative whose truth is embedded in social contexts and power relations. Response to the photographic works and video works is a function of complex, highly political and vulnerable responses forming the controlled matrix of power relations in society. Merklein’s performance reaches deeply into the audience’s humanity.

Red People - Andrej Mircev, Nikoleta Markovic and Eunseo Yi - trace the scars of boundaries and limits, of ‘spectres and leftovers’ becoming the props of new desire and hope. As the next element in their installation of the text of Everything Divided as a wall of books, their installation for Nuns’ Island draws on the theatrical setting as well as the West of Ireland in terms of memory, absence, and archaeology.

Deep States - Reopening Dates
Dates: 31 July - 8 August 2020 (closed Sunday 2 August)
Time: 12:00 - 17:00
Venue: Nun’s Island Theatre, Galway (map)

Safety measures will be implemented in-line with Galway Arts Centre policy. Visitor numbers will be restricted and socially distanced queuing outside Nun’s island Theatre might be required during busy periods. All visitors are asked to wear a mask during their visit to the gallery. Disposable masks will be available if required, but in the interests of sustainability we encourage visitors to wear their own washable fabric masks if possible.

Image: Dominic Thorpe. Image from the performance Table Bite. Galeria Michaela Stock. Vienna. 2019. Image taken by Lea Sonderegger