NUI Galway Exhibition Explores the Idea of The Note, The Notebook and The Idea of Noticing

Nov 15 2013 Posted: 10:50 GMT

The exhibition, at the NUI Galway Gallery in the Quadrangle will run between 12-4pm, Tuesday to Saturday 23 November to 20 December

The NUI Galway Gallery will host the ‘Taking Note or The Curious Eye’ in association with NUI Galway Arts & Theatre Office. The exhibition, organised by Robin Jones, will run from the 23 November to 20 December 2013 and will be open to the public 12pm to 4pm Tuesday to Saturday.

Participants include Silvia Bächli, Will Self, Joe Fyfe, Paul Doran, Olwen Fouèré, Karin Ruggaber, John Rocha, Jürgen Simpson, among a wide range of people. This exhibition explores the idea of the note, the notebook and the idea of noticing.

Noticing and recording are very human activities. Whether noticing comes in the form of a sketchbook or written notebook, on a scrap of paper or via a laptop or maybe iPhone, whether these notes are for some type of personal research, or come from a general curiosity to register “noticing”, or perhaps even drawings made to explain something to another person, they are all about developing a contact with the world.

While writing is woven into the fabric of a huge part of human life and has an acknowledged position as such, drawing too can be thought of in a similar way - though far less acknowledged - in everyday life. It is integrated into an enormous range of human activity.

Both drawing and writing - and the use of digital media - can be thought of as registers of complex moments of experience. This exhibition possibly allows a glimpse into the variable, semi-visible processes of human thought.

Irit Rogoff said that “ curiosity implies a certain unsettling, a notion outside the realm of the known - of things not quite yet understood or articulated...the hidden or the unthought,” which is followed then by the optimism of finding out something you had not known or been able to conceive of before.

Virtually all the work in the show tends towards the quiet and modest, the ruminations of the mind at some stage before an object is made or a conclusion has been drawn, the necessary exploration, searching and grasping towards an often undefined and indefinable end point, or perhaps exploration and examination with no end point in mind at all.

The show brings together a variety of works, written, drawn and digital forms of note-taking –sketchbooks, notebooks, diagrams, the archetypal note on the back of an envelope, digital code, mobile phone photos, sketch models, sound recording, short films and marginalia from writers’ manuscripts.

It will include some powerful and interesting work from the NUI Galway archives, such as mediator Brendan Duddy’s notebook, Kevin Doyle’s handwritten ‘Document on Civil Disobedience” sketches from Jack B Yeats and items from the John Huston archive.

The opening reception will take place on Friday, 22 November at 6pm. Further information on the exhibition is available at or visit For more information contact Robin Jones at  


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