Looking Forward

If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.’

Martin Luther King Jr

Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival

Looking Forward

Date and Time: Sunday 25 October 2020, 3-5pm

Platform: Online event hosted by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality

Category: Online Discussion

Tickets: Open to the public

Booking: Click Here

Moderator: Bryony May, Arts Services Manager at Fermanagh & Omagh District Council

Speakers: Laragh Pittman, artist; Antonio D’Souza, artist; Deirdre Murphy, multi-disciplinary artist; Kate Harris, 4Elements Theatre Company; Maureen McGovern, disability activist; Áine O’Hara, theatremaker; Dave Randall, musician and writer.


This event will create a platform for artists to speak about work and projects they are developing or are thinking of developing in the future. A chance to brainstorm, discuss and share ideas, this event highlights the strength and endurance of the arts community, and their extraordinary ability to persevere.

Kate Harris

Kate Harris is a theatre maker, drama facilitator, and activist. She specializes in theatre provocations that challenge the line between audience and community and provide a framework to engage marginalized communities and seasoned theatre goers alike in combating social exclusion. Kate makes theatre in partnership with artists and a wide range of community groups to create dialogue around complex social issues. Kate has worked with Smashing Barriers: Drama Collective since 2016.

Maureen McGovern

Maureen McGovern is a disability human rights activist. She believes using art as a forum for challenging attitudinal and decimation practices in Irish society against disabled people.  Maureen is the Chairperson of the Ballyfermot Chapelizod Disability Action Collective, Co-ordinator of Smashing Barriers and a founding member of Full Spectrum a national network for disabled people who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex, Asexual, Non-Binary, or simply non-heterosexual in orientation / gender identity. 

Kate and Maureen will speak about the Smashing Barriers verbatim project. Smashing Barriers is a mixed impairment disabled theatre ensemble. Founded in 2016, we use participatory theatre practice in tandem with the Social Model of Disability to create new theatre that shows the lived experiences of disabled people. The verbatim project is using personal stories and historical documentation to create a script that explores the disability rights movement and the impact the movement has had on the lives of disabled people. 

Deirdre Murphy

Deirdre Murphy is a multi-disciplinary performer. She has a highly physical presence and is accomplished in movement, vocal performance, song writing, production, writing for theatre, and spreading the love. She is the writer and composer of Capitalism: The Musical (2017), this was never going to be normal (2019), and many other works for performance which straddle the line between arts and activism. Her current focus is song writing and music production, and her debut EP will soon be released. Originally from Alaska, Deirdre has been creating work for theatre, dance, and music in Ireland for the last 15 years. She has received support from the Arts Council of Ireland and Culture Ireland, and has been featured on RTE’s Culture File, The Arena, The Art of Living with Victoria Mary Clarke, Galway Bay FM, etc. Her work in dance and theatre has toured internationally.

Deirdre will speak about Capitalism: The Musical, her 2019 show ‘this was never going to be normal‘ and the contents of her upcoming EP release.

Áine O’Hara

Áine O’Hara is an award winning theatre-maker creating exciting and vulnerable work for and about people who are often left out of traditional art and theatre spaces. 

Áine’s current projects include The patient will see you now: A large scale solo exhibition focusing on the inadequacies and farcical nature of accessing healthcare in Ireland, the work questions and exposes bureaucracies that oppress those who fall outside certain definitions of ‘normal,’ ‘valuable’, and ‘productive’.  This work is due to take place online and at A4 Sounds Studios in the coming months and Chronic Chats: a remote creative and social group for chronically ill people. Áine is also currently taking part in the Axis Playground Bursary, a residency award for performing artists with disabilities at Axis Ballymun.

Laragh Pittman

Laragh Pittman has worked as a co founder and as a curator with the Art Nomads group for the Imagine show in Christ Church Cathedral as well as Transhumance in Dublin in February2020. She is a visual artist with BA and MA in Fine Art from Nottingham and Reading in England and an MA Art In The Digital World NCAD.

The child of Irish migrants to North America and the UK she moved to Ireland in the 1990s. She uses multiple media fors ocially engaged and participatory art making and builds spaces for creativity, dialogue and exploration of the fluid and transcultural nature of life in Ireland today. Recent work include ‘A Perfect Global City’ a collaborative and participatory project with WEMIN: Migrant Women Empowerment and Integration, a European funded project in 2019 and ‘The Invisible Museum’ in Kilmainham Courthouse as part of the Citizen Artist installation with Common Ground in April 2019. A long-term participatory project ‘Travels Into Dublin’ took place between 2011 and 2013 with the International Women’s Support Group in  the Lantern Centre, Synge Street, and funded through CREATE’s Artist In The Community Scheme ; this culminated in the installation and website Museum Of The ReFound.

Antonio D’Souza

Antonio D’Souza was born in Nairobi Kenya, grew up in North London and now lives in Skerries North County Dublin.   His   grandparents   originally   travelled   to   East  Africa   in   the   early   1900s from the once Portuguese colony, Goa in India. He trained as a 3D designer (BA Hons degree in Furniture and Product   Design,   Ravensbourne,   London   1995).   He   has   designed   and   made   bespoke pieces of furniture and domestic interior accessories for individual clients. Since settling in Ireland in 2015, Antonio has exhibited his work locally and is now focusing his artistic attention on the visual arts.

His work is an exploration and an expression of his multiple cultural and ethnic identities, combined with his need to manipulate materials and components that are often overlooked, hidden from sight or deemed useless. Currently he uses redundant parts from mechanical vehicles to portray abstracts and geometric faces in a series of works entitled –  “Gasket Heads”.  As an educator Antonio has extensive teaching experience in Art, Craft, Design and Technology faculties in Post Primary and Further Education institutions in Ireland, UK and Tanzania in East Africa. 

Laragh, Rajinder and Antonio will all speak about their work on the Migrant Ship project as part of Arts Nomads.

Dave Randall

Dave Randall is a London based musician and writer. He has toured the world playing guitar for Faithless, Dido, Sinead O’Connor and many others, and has released his own critically acclaimed albums under the name Slovo. He composes music for stage and screen and recently completed the score for the feature length documentary ‘There Is A Field’ which brings together Black Lives Matter activists and the Palestinian struggle. He is also the author of the book ‘Sound System: The Political Power of Music‘ which was described by BBC 6Music’s Mark Radcliff as “A deeply intelligent look at music and society. Though provoking, readable and clever.”

Drawing on inspiration from the late 1970’s campaign Rock Against Racism, and citing examples from his own career and work, Dave Randall will discuss the role that music can play in the fight against racism and for a better world.