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Yeats inspired-contest seeks poetry pop-up for Innisfree

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The Institute of Technology Sligo has launched an international design competition inspired by William Butler Yeats’ 1892 poem ‘The Lake Isle of Innisfree’

Architects and artists are invited to propose temporary structures which combine ‘Yeats’ poetic vision and contemporary architectural ideas.’

The winning team – set to be announced on 20 March – will receive around £3,800 and see its £18,800 design constructed on the lake isle in western Ireland in time for Yeats’ 150th birthday in June.

The Lake Isle of Innisfree by William Butler Yeats

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.

According to the brief: [The competition] presents a unique opportunity to design and build in a highly sensitive and protected location, beyond the constraints imposed by a permanent building.

‘It is envisaged that the competition will attract innovative and challenging architectural and sculptural proposals from national and international architects, artists and collaborators. It should also demonstrate the potential of architecture to enhance the experience of an area of outstanding natural beauty.’

Proposals should be temporary, light-weight and prefabricated and may be located anywhere on Innisfree, Lough Gill or in the surrounding water.

The winning structure will host a poetry reading to celebrate Yeats’ birthday on 13 June.

The deadline for entries is 5pm on 12 March.




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