Evening Echo Event, Shalom Park, 31 December 2016
Evening Echo is a public artwork by New Zealand artist Maddie Leach. It will take place on Saturday 31st December 2016 in Shalom Park off Albert Road, Cork. It is sited on old gasometer land gifted by Bord Gáis to Cork City Council in the late 1980s. This site was subsequently dedicated as Shalom Park in 1989. The park sits in the centre of the old Cork neighbourhood known locally as ‘Jewtown’. This neighbourhood is also home to the National Sculpture Factory.
Evening Echo is an art project generated as an artist’s response to the particularities of place and locality. Now in its sixth year, the project continues to gather support from the Cork Hebrew Congregation, Cork City Council, Bord Gáis and its local community. The project is manifested in a sequence of custom-built lamps, a remote timing system, a highly controlled sense of duration, a list of future dates, an annual announcement in Cork’s Evening Echo newspaper and a promissory agreement. Evening Echo is fleetingly activated on an annual cycle, maintaining a delicate but persistent visibility in the park and re-activating its connection to Cork’s Jewish history. Intended to exist in perpetuity, the project maintains a delicate position between optimism for its future existence and the possibility of its own discontinuance.
9th Lamp on : 4:24pm
Sunset : 4:34pm
9th Lamp off : 5:04pm
This year the last night of Hanukkah is Saturday December 31st and offers the only opportunity to see the tall ‘ninth lamp’ alight until next year. The cycle begins 10 minutes before sunset, which occurs this year at 4.34pm, and continues for 30 minutes after sunset when the ninth lamp is extinguished.
This work of art is a fitting tribute to the Cork Jewish Community who lived nearby in the Shalom Park area of Cork city at the turn of the century. The Hebrew Congregation has since dispersed but is remembered with affection and respect in the local community and city wide.
In February 2016 the Cork synagogue hosted its final ceremony, and closed, due to the falling numbers in the Jewish community, and subsequent lack of financial resources to maintain the building on South Terrace. Before its closure Cork City Council arranged for a record to be made of the synagogue, its contents, and the community associated with it. Some of the artefacts have been donated to Cork Public Museum, and will be displayed there over time.
Cork City Council Arts Officer, Jean Brennan, stated “the Evening Echo project is an important annual marker that acknowledges the significant impact of the Jewish Community in Cork. Moreover this art work, in the year of the synagogue closure, acquires an additional significance because it perfectly represents and stresses the precarious balance of a small Community between persistence and disappearance within a changing city. However Evening Echo will last in time as the memory of the Jewish community in Cork city”.
Cork City Council wishes to acknowledge the essential role played by the Rosehill family of Cork in support of this art project and particularly the late Fred Rosehill for his absolute commitment to the realisation of this artwork and for his advocacy and loyalty. He is deeply missed.
The event will be live-streamed by the Cork City Council on www.corkcity.ie
For further details see
Maddie Leach’s work is largely project-based, site responsive and conceptually driven and addresses new thinking on art, sociality and place-based practices. She seeks viable ways of making artworks in order to interpret and respond to unique place-determined content and she is recognised for innovatively investigating ideas of audience spectatorship, expectation and participation in relation to art works. Leach’s recent projects include commissions for Jakarta Biennale (Indonesia, 2015) and spaced 2: future recall (Perth, Australia, 2014-15). She was shortlisted for New Zealand’s premier Walters Prize in 2014 for her project ‘If you find the good oil let us know’. Leach was born in Auckland, New Zealand in 1970 and currently lives and works in Gothenburg, Sweden.
A catalogue with essays by Mick Wilson (artist, writer, educator) and Matt Packer (previous curator of Exhibitions & Projects, Lewis Glucksman Gallery) was published by the National Sculpture Factory in 2011. See: www.nationalsculpturefactory.com for details.