Artist duo French & Mottershead look at society through the lens of local shops at Cashel Arts Festival 2017

A photographic project by UK artist duo French & Mottershead (Tate Modern, The Photographers Gallery) has been commissioned for Cashel Arts Festival 2017.

The Shops Project asks owners, staff and customers of selected Cashel shops to become involved in making a series of photographs and a public exhibition investigating what we buy and who we buy it for. Previously, this work has taken place in towns and cities across the Europe, Brasil and China, and has been the subject of a publication and a major exhibition in Sheffield, UK.

French & Mottershead, Jagode (Greengrocer), 6pm, 23 April 2009, Ljubljana, Slovenia (Photo – French & Mottershead/Urska Boljkovac)

French & Mottershead, Jagode (Greengrocer), 6pm, 23 April 2009, Ljubljana, Slovenia (Photo – French & Mottershead/Urska Boljkovac)

For Cashel Arts Festival 2017 French & Mottershead are working with five local shops, who will each invite their customers to come along with the relative, friend or loved one ‘who’ the purchase was made for and pose together amid a large gathering for a group photoshoot. One of these events will take place outside each participating shop.
You need to make a purchase to take part and invites will be made for two weeks leading up to the date for the photoshoots in Cashel, Saturday, 29th July.

The resulting photographs will be exhibited on the windows or walls of each shop from Saturday, 9th September, in the run up to and the duration of the festival [Thursday, 21st – Sunday, 24th September], and with a smaller edition remaining in place for permanent public view.

Artists French & Mottershead describe the project as a way of looking at society through the lens of local shops, and how the communities they form reflect the place and its people at that moment in time.

cashel arts festival“It’s a way of creating moments of thoughfulness and playful encounter intertwined into everday life. We are excited to be working with fantastic Cashel shops that capture the difference and the individuality of the local, and inviting their staff and their customers to renegotiate their daily encounters. We hope the project will unpick some of the rich personal stories that underpin the choice of purchase, choices that are almost always those based on family ties, love and care.” – Andrew Mottershead, June 2017

Anne Marie O’Donnell, Chairperson of Cashel Arts Festival says: “French & Mottershead will offer Cashel an exciting opportunity to explore identity and our ties to Cashel and each other in a fun way”.

Dates: Saturday, 29th July Photo shoot with participating shops
Saturday, 9th September Official launch of Public Exhibition
Thursday, 21st – Sunday, 24th September Cashel Arts Festival
Venues: The 5 participating Cashel shops are:
Cashel Flowers
Davern’s (Clothes/Fashion)
Kujawiak (Polish Food Store)
Grogan’s (Ice Cream Parlour)
Martin O’Dwyers (Family Butcher)
Invitations available from participating shops

Twitter @cashelartsfest Facebook /cashelartsfest

French & Mottershead, People who eat meat from Enver’s shop, Pinar (Butcher), June/July 2009, Tepabasi, Istanbul, Turkey (Photo – French & Mottershead/Selim Sume)

French & Mottershead, People who eat meat from Enver’s shop, Pinar (Butcher), June/July 2009, Tepabasi, Istanbul, Turkey (Photo – French & Mottershead/Selim Sume)

About French & Mottershead

French & Mottershead are the UK artist duo Rebecca French and Andrew Mottershead. Creating
experiences across artform that are as playful and poetic as they are subversive, they investigate
moments of exchange and transformation within public and private realms. Through their work they
invite viewers and participants to think again about who they are, and their ties to place and
one another.

Over the past 15 years French & Mottershead have developed a substantial body of socially-engaged,
visual and participatory projects in site-specific contexts and locations, as well as showing work in
galleries across the UK and internationally, including Tate Modern, The Photographers Gallery, Salt,
Istanbul, Centro Cultural São Paulo and Perth Institute of Contemporary Art (PiCA).

Recent commissions include; Woodland, IBT Bristol International Festival, 2017 Waterborne, Points of
Departure, Estuary Festival, 2016, Brass Calls Heart of Glass, St Helen’s, 2015, The River Flows Gently,
Yokohama, Japan, 2013, Walkways, Tate Modern, London, 2012, Over the Threshold, The
Photographers’ Gallery, London 2011. French & Mottershead were Visiting Research Fellows at The
Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London in 2015 and have received numerous
invitations to run workshops, give talks and lectures.

About Cashel Arts Festival

Cashel Arts Festival is a four day festival set in the town of Cashel in County Tipperary, famous for the
ancient and iconic Rock of Cashel. The significant heritage sites in the town form a dramatic backdrop
to a fine selection of contemporary arts events every autumn.

Take your pick from music, dance, visual arts, film, theatre, workshops, family events and literature
events. Involving and encouraging visitors and the local community to participate in a wide variety of
arts is key to the festival. Whether you want to sit back and be entertained or get ‘stuck in’ and learn
something new, this festival will have something for you.

Placing great importance on inclusivity ensures that many events are free and some have special
offers or concessions. The festival has strong links to the community it serves and plays an integral
part in connecting community groups in the locality. It also welcomes visitors to Cashel, giving them an
opportunity to extend their stay by offering exciting arts events in this wonderfully historic town.
Supporting professional artists in developing their work and giving them a platform to perform is also
a vital role of the festival, with most artists involved in the festival usually based in Ireland. Strong links
with artists built-up over the 14 years the festival has been running ensures that high quality events
are the hallmark of the festival.

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