mean time

Collaborative live
sound art performance
& radio broadcast

This large-scale sound art project, curated by La Cosa Preziosa and Rachel Ní Chuinn, brought together 10 female sound artists (Irish and International) to the historical location of Richmond Barracks in Dublin city, where 77 women were remanded after their involvement in the 1916 Rising- including Countess Markievicz herself.  


Here the artists performed a unique improvisation based on especially commissioned pieces on the theme of these lost 25 minutes and 21 seconds, for the anniversary of the abolition of Dublin Mean Time. The event combined contemporary music, performance art, radio art and electroacoustic composition, 'clawing back' time lost and imagining many possible future Irelands. In addition free sound art workshops for all the family took place on the grounds of Richmond Barracks over the performance weekend.


The programme was performed live to a full house in Richmond Barracks, broadcast live on Irish national radio on RTÉ Lyric FM, and went on to receive nominations at the New York Radio Awards and the IMRO Irish Radio Awards.


Curated by La Cosa Preziosa and Rachel Ní Chuinn, with participating artists: 

Daria Baiocchi | Fiona Hallinan | La Cosa Preziosa | Vicky Langan | Una Lee | Olivia Louvel | Jenn Kirby | Claudia Molitor | Gráinne Mulvey | Rachel Ní Chuinn


 More info:

Supported by The Arts Council, Dublin City Council, RTÉ Lyric FM and Richmond Barracks

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"This collaborative sound art project takes its cue from a lesser known 1916 episode, when in a letter to the Irish Times Countess Markievicz complained about the Time (Ireland) Act introduced by the House of Commons that year in favour of GMT.  Up to that point, Dublin Mean Time had been measured by the Dunsink observatory as rising 25 minutes and 21 seconds later than at Greenwich. Despite Countess Markievicz’s public protestations, Dublin lost its time.


One hundred years later, female voices are massively underrepresented both on the radio and in the world of sound and technology. In surveys both men and women are conditioned to think that if a woman is speaking for 30% or more of the allotted time, then she is hogging the discussion. This insidious bias against women's voices has a major impact on women's social capital. 


Our project looks at how Countess Markievicz in her own day presented a strong, vocal female figure during the 1916 Rising and beyond. Amongst her aristocratic class, her behaviour was largely considered eccentric and unpalatable, however many women growing up in Ireland clutched on to her as a model for what might be possible. 


In 2016 women in Ireland are still struggling to have an equal say in the laws that govern our lives. Although our sound works might not be explicitly political, by shifting the balance of women's voices we are clawing back lost time and space and shaking the existing male paradigms in the field of sound and electronics.


We also believe that time is a shared space. Our improvisation will use time to generate a space of social inclusion, where the performer becomes the listener and the ground is laid bare for experiment and evolution."  


- Excerpt from the Mean Time programme

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