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Children’s voices: Are we listening? 8 - 9 Nov 2017

We welcome Kids’ Own Publishing Partnership who will host a 2-day sectoral event as part of its 20-year anniversary celebrations. In partnership with Dublin Book Festival.

The event will explore the value of publishing with children, and interrogate how we can support children to be seen and heard within our literature, culture and society.

With the ambitious vision of current policy to reach all children through cultural tuition by 2022, Kids’ Own seeks to ask how we make space for quality and depth of engagement to support children as cultural makers and creators in their own right.

Wed 8 November: Round table discussion (10.30am – 4pm)

Chair: Martin Drury
Guest speakers: TBC

Through a series of presentations and discussions hosted by Kids’ Own Creative Director, Orla Kenny and Kids’ Own co-founder Victoria Ryle, the day will involve explorations and case studies of the Kids’ Own archive, followed by discussions involving a chaired panel of guest speakers, and focused conversations, where participants will be invited to explore and interrogate how we make space for quality and depth of engagement, the role of the professional artist working with children and young people, and how we give children’s work greater visibility and recognition within mainstream culture. This event is free but booking is essential.

Thu 9 November: A day of practical exploration and creativity

Two practical workshops, exploring print making, digital media, book-making and folding techniques, are open to artists and writers who are interested in exploring meaningful processes of engagement with children and young people. Workshops €10 per person.

11am – 1pm
All That We Are: An artist-led public participatory workshop with Simon Spain (Australia)

Kids’ Own co-founder and artist Simon Spain returns to Ireland to share his practice with Irish artists, teachers and practitioners. Through this practical workshop where participants will make figures from wood and plaster that will be joined to create a gathering, Simon will discuss key elements of his current practice-based PhD enquiry about working as a socially engaged artist. The work is centred around a strong theory of collaborative making environments that create liminal spaces for individual input while leading to a shared outcome celebrating difference.

2pm – 5pm
Print and book-making workshop with Alain Regnier (Belgium)

In this workshop, printmaker and art teacher (and founder of Motamo International Biennial of Children’s Books) Alain Regnier shares his way of working and will support participants to make books that include print and text, inspired by the work of his second-level students in Belgium. Copies of the books made during this workshop will be taken back to Belgium to be shared with a European audience.

About Martin Drury...

Martin Drury is a practitioner and policy-maker with nearly 40 years’ experience in a variety of key roles in the arts in Ireland. He is currently self-employed, engaged in a range of projects as advisor, curator and theatre director. Since 1979 he has been variously Arts Education Officer (Sligo/Leitrim); Artistic Director of TEAM Theatre; Education Officer of the Arts Council; author of the Dublin Arts Report; founder director of The Ark which he developed (1992-1995) and then led until 2001; Arts Director and then Strategic Development Director at the Arts Council. He has also spent periods of time as a theatre director and dramaturg, directing more than twenty productions for Druid Theatre, Opera Theatre Company, Second Age, TEAM, The Ark, and the Abbey Theatre where he was an Associate Director for a number of years. His pro bono work includes being a member of the board of Music Generation, Ireland’s National Music Education Programme and of Create the national development agency for collaborative arts.

About Simon Spain...

As founding Creative Producer of ArtPlay in Melbourne, and as a practising artist himself, Simon Spain has an experienced understanding of how many teaching artists approach their practice and deliver their work. Simon has made presentations around the world about his work and research at ArtPlay, and, after completing a Masters in Social Investment last year, has just embarked on a reflective practice PhD at RMIT in Melbourne.

You can see a full summary of Simons work here and an online resume here.

About Alain Regnier...

Alain is a graduate of the University of Sculptural and Visual Arts at Mons, Belgium (ESAPV) and specialised in printmaking. He has had solo exhibitions and participated in group exhibitions both in Belgium and abroad, since 1983. Since 1993, he has been an art teacher in the Provincial Athenaeum of La Louvière and professor of computer graphics in the arts and crafts of La Louvière. Alain prints and publishes the work of Belgian and international artists and writers and has worked on collaborations with primary schools in Belgium, France, Spain, Switzerland, Italy and Germany. Since 2011, he has been the founder and organiser MOTAMO, an international biennial event and exhibition of children's books in the Provincial Athenaeum of La Louvière.