In association with Cork Midsummer Festival
June 24th @ 8pm Curated by Leagues O'Toole
"For the Places of Comfort project I invited three artists living in or native to Cork to create new work based on the idea of a place they were drawn to during the lockdown periods of the COVID-19 pandemic when our movements in Ireland were restricted to a 5km radius and many of us found ourselves moving in circles or loops, rethreading certain routes, and observing the same local landmarks. In some circumstances, through the limitations we lived under we found ourselves rediscovering or more closely examining where we lived, the infrastructure of the nature and the land most immediately around our doorstep. The impact of the restrictions and the pause of activity and sense of claustrophobia - and in some cases intense loneliness - brought huge mental challenges for many people. At times, I felt myself and probably others were drawn to certain spots to find a place of reflection or comfort, a place were I could breathe for a few minutes and distract myself from the anxiety of the uncertainty of the pandemic. I have always valued artists as the individuals in our society best equipped to articulate social anxieties, moods and change. Through this expression we can relate, connect and feel comforted in one another's shared experience. I asked three artists whose work was grounded in music but very much drew upon other disciplines of visual art and literature to facilitate and elaborate on the concepts and narratives of their work. The second artist I invited was Elaine Howley, who I've barely met in person but have this perspective of as someone quite central to the underground music scene in Cork City as a member of numerous bands, each making their own distinctly unique music. To my mind, Elaine is clearly a natural collaborator, but for this project I'm interested in how she approaches music from a more isolated context and draws upon the influences of the various projects she's involved in into something purely personal. I imagine we might hear elements of folk music, psyche, and ambience, and perhaps more. My impression of her is someone with a deep and broad love of music, which I really admire, and I'm excited to see how she responds to this invitation." - Leagues O'Toole
Elaine Howley is an experimental musician and singer from Tipperary living in Cork City. Her style has been carved out through involvement in a multitude of bands in the city's vibrant scene including as a singer in the psychedelic rock group the Altered Hours, as a member of ambient trio Crevice, alternative folk group Morning Veils and Howlbux. Howley blends deep synths, analog beats and emotive melodies to create her music, mixing digital recording with cassette loops and vocal layers. After contributing to a host of critically acclaimed compilations, Elaine is currently working towards her first full length solo release.