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The Depot

For further info and images: contact Mark O’Gorman, Visual Arts Manager. / 085 1433 858


Kerry Guinan


The Red Thread is a monumental new production and limited ephemeral performance created by Kerry Guinan with an international team of collaborators. It will take place May 4th - 10th at The Complex Gallery, Dublin as part of the ‘Art Factory’ programme. 

For 6 performances only, from 8am - 1.30pm, an installation of industrial sewing machines will be activated live in The Complex. The kinetic installation appears to be self-operating, but there are puppeteers in hiding. Over 8,000 kilometers away, in Bengaluru, India, workers in a textiles factory press upon the foot pedals of their sewing machines. Their incidental choreography is reproduced precisely - and in real time - by the installation in The Complex, with the support of original networked technology. The resulting performative installation overcomes vast distances to facilitate moments of human encounter between people at opposite ends of supply chains, making visceral the extraordinary scale, and underlying humanity, of the globalised economy. This unique live event takes place over six days and is never to be restaged. Please take note of the special gallery opening hours (from 8am - 1.30pm daily), which are congruent with the working hours of the participating textile workers in Bengaluru. 

Undoubtedly her most ambitious and sophisticated work to date, The Red Thread is a development of Guinan’s consistent concerns for social relations hidden at the base of the economy. The feat of producing the work has entailed its own set of social relations, which are explored in an accompanying film by Anthony O’Connor. In executing her vision across continents and cultures, The Red Thread sees Guinan demonstrate the surprising capacity people have to interfere with the colossal and seemingly immutable systems we find ourselves in. 

Kerry Guinan is a conceptual artist working to critique labour and property relations under neoliberal capitalism. Characterised by its ambitious, risk-taking approach, her practice crosses the disciplines of performance, delegated performance, installation, public art, photography, and digital media to bring these relations into sharp focus. Recent projects include Sell Nothing, a public artwork with Andrew Keogh in Limerick City (2021), her global-scale solo exhibition ‘Our Celestial Sphere at Pallas Projects/Studios (2019), and the curation of TULCA Festival of Visual Arts: TACTICAL MAGIC (2019). 


8am - 10:30am Wednesday 4th May 2022

The Red Thread: Public launch with Indian tea reception


Celebrate the launch of The Red Thread in this early morning event, which corresponds with the Indian working day. Sample a specially curated selection of Indian teas while experiencing the very first performance of this major live installation. With speeches by Kerry Guinan and project partners.

11am - 12pm Saturday 7  May 2022

Unravelling the Thread: Public tour with the Dublin Art and Technology Association


Join artist Kerry Guinan and collaborators Frank Prendergast (Space Forms), Aisling Murray, Anthony O’Connor, Emily Waszak and Sai Mulpuru with Dublin Art & Technology Association (DATA) for a public tour of The Red Thread. Starting from the networked technologies and infrastructures that the project is built on, this tour will consider the live installation within the wider techno-political contexts that it, and its performers are situated in, such as labour automation, global supply chains, surveillance capitalism, digital anthropology, and Dublin and Bengaluru’s status as so-called ‘Silicon’ tech hubs of their respective regions.


This is a free event but capacity is limited, arrive in a timely fashion to avoid disappointment. 

7 - 7.30pm Tuesday 10 May 2022

Variations On A Sewing Machine: Sound performance by Natalia Beylis & Michelle Doyle


Following her Variations On A Sewing Machine EP (2021), which was recorded on a domestic sewing machine using contact microphones and effects pedals, musician and sound artist Natalia Beylis was commissioned by Kerry Guinan to develop a graphic score in response to The Red Thread. In this reflective event marking the end of the show’s 6-day run, Beylis will be joined by artist and musician Michelle Doyle to perform the score on the industrial sewing machines in The Red Thread installation.


Please note that The Red Thread will not be live during this performance: catch it before it ends at 1.30pm that day. 


This is a free event but capacity is limited, arrive in a timely fashion to avoid disappointment.

Production team: Pret Interpret Clothing India, Robert Collins, Space Forms, Sai Mulpuru, Bakula Nayak, Anthony O’Connor, Aisling Murray, and Emily Waszak

Supported by the Complex Dublin, the Arts Council of Ireland, Fingal Arts Office, and Dublin City Arts Office

Video: Anthony O'Connor

Soundtrack: Natalia Beylis

Documentation of The Red Thread exhibition at The Complex.

 Performed by stitching workers at Pret Interpret Clothing, Bangalore, India.

 Footage by Anthony O'Connor.

 Editing by Kerry Guinan.


For More Information And Tickets




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