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Friday 20 April 2018

W.B Yeats’s obsession with the occult celebrated with a major new exhibition

Megan Johnston, Director at The Model Credit: James Connolly
Megan Johnston, Director at The Model Credit: James Connolly Newsdesk Newsdesk

W.B Yeats’s spooky obsession with the occult is to be celebrated this weekend with a major new exhibition at The Model in County Sligo - his spiritual home.

Psychic Lighthouse will open to the public on Yeats Day, Saturday June 13, which this year sees a huge range of national events to mark the 150th anniversary of the great poet’s birth.

It will feature some of the best-known Irish and international artists who investigate ritual, spiritualism and occult practices.

The exhibition, curated by Emer McGarry, will include work by Irish artists including Clodagh Emoe, Deirdre McKenna, Susan MacWilliam and Stephen Rennicks as well as international artists Joachim Koester, Maria Loboda and Goshka Macuga.

Entry is free and it will run from June 13 to August 30.

Red More: Celebrating 150 years of WB Yeats, the true poet of Easter 1916

Psychic Lighthouse will be launched by The Model Director Megan Johnston at a recreation of the Victorian tradition of a Candlelight Salon with well-known artists and public figures.

In the late Victorian age, ‘salons’ were a popular form of entertainment featuring music and conversation.

This heady and mysterious tradition will be recreated with experts on Yeats, the occult and the arts discussing the poet and his interesting past-time.

Read More: The getaway... to Yeats country

Some of those taking part include the Abbot of Glenstal Abbey in Limerick, Mark Patrick Hederman; well-known American artist Susan Hiller; author of A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing Eimear MacBride and poet and playwright Vincent Woods.

Also taking part in the discussion is Margaret Harper, Glucksman Professor in Contemporary Writing in English at the University of Limerick.

She is Director of the Yeats International Summer School and the President of the International Yeats Society.

Read More: Theatre: Raincoats and Yeats on the Wild Atlantic Way

Meanwhile, The Model is also launching 'Entwined Memories', an exhibition of contemporary Irish textiles.

The event is in its fifth year.

Entry is free and it will run from June 13 to July 12.

For further information, visit

William Butler Yeats
William Butler Yeats

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