NCAD launches Aftereffects and Untold Histories online events programme

Programme of live discussions and performances is free for all to attend. 15 April to 15 May 2021.

Image: Maurice O’Connell and Brian Connolly (aka Desert Rats), durational performance drawing a red dotted line around the Temple Bar district in Dublin city centre (1994), commissioned by Jobst Graeve, National Irish Visual Arts Library, Artsource Collection © the artists.

Tuesday 6 April 2021 The National College of Art and Design (NCAD) has today launched Aftereffects and Untold Histories: Politics and Spaces of Performance since the 1990s, a research project and online events programme running over four weeks in April and May. The programme of 19 discussions and performances will examine the intersections of politics and performance in Europe in the 1990s, as well as their legacies today.

The Aftereffects and Untold Histories project is commissioned by NCAD in partnership with the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA) and the National Irish Visual Arts Library (NIVAL) and curated by Alissa Kleist and Ciara Moloney. As part of the project, NCAD has commissioned a series of in-depth interviews and will also bring together scholars from across Europe, as well as performance artists from different generations. All participants – including the public – will be invited to share their experiences and perspectives.

Performance underwent a bold transformation in the 1990s with many artists leaving the confines of the gallery to take their art to the streets. Often using their own bodies and ordinary settings and objects as means of expression, they confronted difficult topics concerning memory, history, sexuality and gender.

Co-curator of the Aftereffects and Untold Histories programme, Alissa Kleist said: “The Good Friday Agreement, the end of communist rule in Eastern Europe, civil war in Yugoslavia and the rise of populist nationalism, as well as campaigns for gender rights and AIDS activism, shaped the 1990s into a turbulent period, and often formed the context for critical and creative performance practices. New affinities between artists, formed across all of Europe, and new artist-led spaces and institutions were launched too.

“Yet this is not a fixed, or even well-understood, history, and so the Aftereffects and Untold Histories programme will gather new knowledge and reflections on performance during the period.”

Director of NCAD, Professor Sarah Glennie said: “We are very excited to launch this programme of events, which represents a culmination of many months of research and collaboration with artists, curators, writers and academics from Ireland and abroad. The vibrant programme of events will explore a fascinating period in recent Irish and European history and the very important issue of archiving performance, and we very much look forward to hearing the insights of the many contributors.”

Contributors to the programme include artists, curators, writers and academics from Ireland and abroad. Pivotal moments from recent Irish history that will be explored include The Troubles in Northern Ireland and the campaign to repeal the Eighth Amendment. Broader themes will include the early years of performance art in Ireland; the possibilities of presenting performance via archival and digital platforms; performance art in public spaces; the relationship between performance art, activism and the archive; and the legacies of Irish performance art in the 1990s for subsequent generations of practitioners.

Aftereffects and Untold Histories consists of a total of 19 discussions and performances and will run from 15 April to 15 May 2021. All programme events are live, free and open for all to attend, with limited attendance in place for some events. All will take place online via Zoom. Those interested can view the full schedule of events and register here.

Recordings of many of the talks and performances will also be available online after the programme finishes.



Issued by Murray on behalf of the National College of Art and Design (NCAD)


For further information contact:

Orna Clarke
087 677 0360

Aoibheann O’Sullivan
087 629 1453


Notes to Editors

About the National College of Art and Design (NCAD)

The National College of Art and Design occupies a unique position in art and design education in Ireland, offering the widest range of art and design degrees at undergraduate and postgraduate level.


About Aftereffects and Untold Histories

The Aftereffects and Untold Histories programme is a partnership between NCAD, the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA) and the National Irish Visual Arts Library (NIVAL). Aftereffects and Untold Histories is part of NCAD’s contribution to a EU-funded L’Internationale project, Our Many Europes. L’Internationale is a network of major museums and education partners. It represents a new internationalist model and defends a concept of common heritage that is based on interconnected archives and collections. Ultimately, L’Internationale challenges the way globalising art institutions replicate the structures of multinational powers and the streamlined, centralised distribution of knowledge.