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Culture and Consolation for a Special Culture Night Online

17 August 2020 - The Trinity Long Room Hub is bringing its Culture Night offering online this year, as we celebrate the value of culture as consolation in these tumultuous times.

The Trinity Long Room Hub’s programme of events continues on Friday 18th of September when we join colleagues in Trinity College Dublin, and cultural institutions all around the country to explore and celebrate the value of culture in our lives.

Joining Trinity Long Room Hub Director Professor Eve Patten for a special ‘Culture Night Conversation’ at 4pm on Friday, 18th September will be Sean Hewitt, poet and teaching fellow at Trinity’s School of English, and Director of the National Gallery of Ireland, Lynn Scarff.

In 2018, Lynn Scarff was appointed Director of the National Museum of Ireland. Formerly Director of Science Gallery Dublin, she was part of the leadership team that established the Global Science Gallery Network bringing the vision of Science Gallery to eight cities globally by 2020. An advocate of participative museums, she has developed compelling programmes of cultural events exploring the boundaries of art and science, and engaging young people and underrepresented groups in cultural spaces.

Author of poetry collection Tongues of Fire (Cape, 2020), Dr Sean Hewitt is a rising literary voice who won a Northern Writers’ Award in 2016 and more recently an Eric Gregory Award in 2019 for his debut pamphlet of poems, Lantern (Offord Road Books, 2019). He is currently a teaching fellow at Trinity College Dublin’s School of English and a former Leverhulme Fellow fellow at the Trinity Long Room Hub and most recently, at University College Cork. He is also a book critic for The Irish Times.

‘Our conversation will be a window, opening on the many ways that culture – in its various forms – brings comfort, resilience and a sense of community to human lives’, said Professor Patten. ‘The writer Franz Kafka described culture as “an axe for the frozen sea inside us”, and we want to reflect briefly on that idea, as a preface to the many wonderful activities happening online across Ireland on Culture Night.’

To open this discussion of culture and consolation, the Trinity Long Room Hub will also launch a specially commissioned artwork by our artist in residence Rita Duffy. The piece, which will be launched online from 4pm on Friday 18th September, forms part of the artist’s ‘Anatomy of Hope’ series, conceived in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Those visiting the Trinity Long Room Hub website on Friday 18th will be able to interact with the artwork and its ‘pulsing’ links to explore this topic further.

This year, Trinity’s partner schools and the Library will also be involved in Culture Night’s programme of events – both offline and online. The Terry Pratchett Project returns with researchers from across Trinity College Dublin and beyond coming together to celebrate the life and works of Terry Pratchett. The Book of Kells and Old Library will open its doors from 5pm – 9pm on September 18th to registered attendees. This year visitors to Trinity College Dublin are promised an inspiring experience as they view the newly unveiled Book of Kells Treasury and Display case. For more information on these events and more, visit


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