Limerick’s Elemental festival to fuse art and technology

Alan Owens

Reporter:

Alan Owens

Arts and culture - with a little fusion of techonology: Jenny Allen, Alan Hogan, Mayor Michael Sheahan, Pius McGrath and Mags O'Donoghue at the Elemental Programme launch
ART and technology are intertwined in a new development for the returning Elemental Arts and Culture festival in Limerick.

ART and technology are intertwined in a new development for the returning Elemental Arts and Culture festival in Limerick.

Organisers festival, returning for a third year this September, believe that they have discovered a way to “bring the programme to life”.

Elemental, taking place over four days this year, was launched this week and it is hoped that festival goers will interact with this year’s programme in a new fun and creative way.

“We are very eager to see how the links between technology and art could be used to bring another dimension to the festival,” explained Alan Hogan, of the Elemental Festival team.

“Having encountered augmented technology which is a clever way of bringing a static page to life, we wanted to see if it could feature on the programme.

“Thanks to a nifty little symbol which turns up on various pages in the programme, magic things happen, which means you can really engage with the programme more than ever.”

Prospective attendees will first need to need to download a free app called Augment, which is available on iPhone, iPad or Android devices.

“Then, wherever you see the Augment symbol in the programme, scan the page and there are little surprises to be found,” explained Mr Hogan.

“Children and adults alike can enjoy seeing the various characters come to life in our programme which is in circulation throughout the city,” he added.

Attending the launch was Mayor Michael Sheahan, who was “genuinely surprised when we showed him the interactive nature of the programme, as he had never seen anything like that before.

“Keeping an innovative edge to the festival is a priority for us, so it’s great to see that reaction,” added Alan.

A wide ranging programme of events has been put together for the multidisciplinary arts and culture festival, backed by City of Culture.

The last two years of the festival have been very successful, growing to three days last year and adding a further day to the programme this year.

The festival gets underway with Much Loved, a whimsical photographic collection of teddy bear portraits by award winning photographer Mark Nixon, which will go on display at 69 O’Connell Street.

Other highlights include The Bookshop Band - performing in O’Mahony’s Booksellers at: Senmaru - a performer of traditional Japanese juggling, performed in traditional kimono whowill be giving two open-air performances and We Bring the Summer With Us - an immersive sound experience specially created, evoking the feeling of Summers past and taking place in the Coach House at Culture House in Pery Square.

There are also a series of performance walking tours, a video display on the history of Limerick’s clocks, a Forgotten Skills expo, giant kangaroos on bouncing stilts, bite size theatre performances, pop up cultural events and lots for children.

See Elemental for more details.