SAMPLE-STUDIOS is set to hold a new solo exhibition by Catarina Araújo at The Lord Mayor’s Pavilion and the Cork Public Museum at Fitzgerald Park to run for the months of March and April.
An immersive and interactive sculptural exhibition arising from a socially engaged practice with mental health professionals based in Cork city, ‘Cocooning — Catch a Breath’ is an art project designed to understand the impacts of Covid on the mental health sector that will take place from March 16 to April 22.
Four ‘cocoons’ — physical structures designed in collaboration with four mental-health practitioners which represent a safe space in which they can pause and reflect, will be on display at the Lord Mayor’s Pavilion and Cork Public Museum at Fitzgerald Park.
During the research period for the project, one word that struck Araújo throughout meetings and conversations with the mental health professionals involved was ‘cocoon’.
Cocoons came to be associated with a mode of expression and also as a state of being that was being imposed on people by the State during Covid-19 lockdowns. The four participants were invited to think about what expressions would illustrate their experiences during the pandemic, and to imagine and create their own cocoon (small-scale sculpture) that would provide them with what they felt was lacking in their immediate environment.
Visitors to the exhibition are invited to explore these four cocoons, two of which will be on display in the Lord Mayor’s Pavilion and a second pair installed in The Cork Public Museum, and experience a moment of reflection in a safe space designed with wellbeing and solace in mind.
Catarina Araújo is a Portuguese Cork-based visual socially engaged artist who recently completed 15 months of an artist residency with Sample-Studios as part of The Radical Institute Studios of Sanctuary programme for socially engaged artists from an asylum seeker, refugee, or migrant background. It focused on cultures of care and the sustainability of socially engaged, collaborative and participatory art practice.