Student Art at Dublin Airport

Michelene Huggard Photo Marc O’Sullivan

It’s not easy for young artists fresh out of art college to find space to show their work. A new initiative between Dublin Airport (a subsidiary of daa), Business to Arts and the National College of Art and Design (NCAD), ‘Creative Journeys’ is a two-year public art programme that sees works of art by students and graduates of NCAD displayed in public areas at Dublin Airport, showcasing their creative work to an international audience.

The collaboration plans to deliver this public art programme at the airport over the next two years with a number of sites across the airport campus hosting artworks. The sites are located to allow both departing and arriving passengers view the works of art, and enable members of the public who are at the airport but not travelling to also view some of the installations.

her work examines the immigrant experience of Syrian refugees on their arrival in alien lands

Michelene Huggard, a 2018 graduate, was selected for inclusion in the project and has two paintings Disintegration I and II in an exhibition in the Transatlantic Lounge. Fittingly, her work examines the immigrant experience of Syrian refugees on their arrival in alien lands. The work, Huggard explains ‘is concerned with the idea of being both visible and invisible at the same time. The Syrian refugees who arrive on foreign shores quickly become irrelevant in their host countries. Having lost family, friends, livelihood, country, autonomy, and freedom, they become redundant, and effectively invisible.’

The installation NCAD Illuminated in Terminal 2 until March 2020 was created over the last five years by designer Bob Gray and photographer, Matthew Thompson. This installation captures and curates the working practices and outputs of NCAD students across a range of creative disciplines with a series of vignettes of past and present students including Leanne Coffey, Elrie Carmon, and Andrew Simpson among many others.

Looking ahead, the 51st & Green Lounge at the airport will offer executive travellers the opportunity to view a series of three ‘Object & Image’ exhibitions between 2018 and 2020 featuring the work of recent NCAD graduates including Eimhin Farrell, Dónal Geheran, Róisín O’Donnell (see page 396 of this issue) and Katie Wise.

Rose Comiskey