Dorothy Cross and Lisa Hannigan to Collaborate on Work to Honour Migrants

Lisa Hannigan

Dorothy Cross and Lisa Hannigan to Collaborate on Work to Honour Migrants

'Heartship' will involve an Irish naval ship sailing up the River Lee with the relic of a heart on board.

As part of the Sounds from a Safe Harbour festival, which takes place on 10–15 September in Cork, artist Dorothy Cross will create a new work featuring singer Lisa Hannigan.

Heartship will involve the Irish naval boat the L.É. James Joyce sailing up the River Lee on 14 September with Hannigan on board as well as the relic of a human heart. Recordings of Hannigan singing songs about the heart will be heard together with the sound of the glass armonica played by Alasdair Malloy. The boat will then dock in Cork and there will be a free live performance by Hannigan.

The work aims to honour migrants who have died at sea and the relic of the heart is integral to the project. It was discovered in a crypt in Cork in 1863, encased in a lead cyst. The person to whom the heart belonged is unknown.

Commenting on the work, Cross said:

Heartship has been haunting me for the past three years… wishing to honour the many hearts of migrant people who disappear below the ocean surface and lie unnamed on the sea-bed.

Filmmaker Alan Gilsenan will work with Cross to create a film about Heartship that will be screened at the Crawford Gallery.

The work comes twenty years after another work by Cross, Ghostship, in Dublin Bay in 1999. A ship was painted with phosphorous paint and moored for three weeks where it glowed each night in the darkness.

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Published on 23 August 2019

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