Podcast details challenges of making Mirror Pavilion during COVID

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galway daily arts Podcast details the challenges of making the Mirror Pavilion during COVID
John Gerrard's Mirror Pavilion, Leaf Work (Derrigimlagh) 2020 pictured in situ on Derrigimlagh Bog as part of Galway International Arts Festival 2021. Commissioned by Galway International Arts Festival for Galway 2020, European Capital of Culture. Photo Ros Kavanagh

Galway International Arts Festival has released a podcast on the making of the captivating Mirror Pavilion during the COVID pandemic.

The Mirror Pavilion, an installation by John Gerard, provided a dazzling spectacle for audiences in Galway City and Connemara over the past two years.

The striking cube, measuring seven metres on each side, had three sides and the top clad with highly reflective mirror panels.

The fourth side was a high-resolution LED wall that allowed for the two part displays, Corn Work and Leaf Work to be played for audiences.

The artwork, which is powered by sustainable energy sources, is a response to the escalating climate crisis.

Mirror PavilionCorn Work, wowed an audience of over 120,000 when it was presented over three weeks on Claddagh Quay in Galway City in 2020.

John Gerrard at the Claddagh, where Mirror Pavilion, Corn Work was displayed. Photo: Ros Kavanagh

Its follow up Mirror Pavilion, Leaf Work equally captivated audiences in Derrigimlagh Bog in Connemara as part of Galway International Arts Festival 2021.

After it’s long stay in Galway, the installation went on the road, to feature at the prestigious Biennale of Sydney for three months this year.

This podcast by Galway International Arts Festival, and NUI Galway, documents the making and staging of the installation, against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic.

It offers an insight into how an arts organisation was affected by the global pandemic, and how it responded to each of the challenges in an effort to present an artwork of scale.

It charts the delays and obstacles the team faced as the pandemic spread across the globe.

This included the challenge of getting the bespoke, seven metre by seven metre LED screen manufactured and transported from China in January 2020, as the Government there reported treating dozens of cases of an unknown virus emanating from Wuhan.

But also here at home, the project was affected by shut downs and delays, before finally getting to build and present Mirror Pavilion along Middle Quay for the reimagined festival in 2020.

The podcast was created by award-winning producer Andy Gaffney, creator and producer of the hit podcast, Promenade, which gained national and international attention when it was launched in early November.

It is available online on all major podcast platforms, and is also housed at NUI Galway’s library as part of GIAF’s Education Partnership with the university.

Listen to the podcast episode here: Podbean | Apple | Spotify