Miraculous Thirst

how to get off in days of deprivation

05/05/2018 – 25/05/2018
Galway Arts Centre, Galway


Basic Space in association with the Galway Arts Centre is delighted to present Miraculous Thirst, how to get off in days of deprivation by Emma Haugh and Eimear Walshe, curated by Daniel Bermingham.

Miraculous Thirst, is a collaborative encounter between shared practices of queer world making, towards the blossoming of shameless queer desire (thirst). The works perform a repositioning of public space and the private sphere in relation to the non-reproductive pleasures of getting off.

Analogue sites of social sexual pleasure - public toilets/park bushes/nightclubs/bars - are becoming sanitised under the forces of rising rents and the intensification of human capital, transposed into a digital non-place, rubbing up against a reproductive, domestic present, what José Esteban Muñoz calls the “prison house... of the here and now.” Where do we get off? Queer intimacy and desire are becoming regulated actions, their manifestations monitored in both private and public realms. Lives at the intersections of systems of oppression are threatened on the streets, by lovers, in the bedroom and in the bushes. How do we maintain spaces for shared sensual /sexual pleasure and care when personal safety is at risk?

Gloria Anzaldúa claimed herself to be the “Shadow Beast”, a shape-shifting queer body slithering in the cruisy dark.  Miraculous Thirst is a hissing ephemeral moment of queer abundance and potentiality, a horizon in the midst of deprivation, denial, trauma and violence. Through this generative exercise, Miraculous Thirst seeks to activate a colloquialism of queer reclamation, staking ownership to spaces and networks under queer economies of care.

Please join us for an opening celebration and the performance of ‘Sex in Public’ by Emma Haugh, at the Galway Arts Centre, 6 pm, Saturday, 5th May and for a reading by Eimear Walshe 1 pm, Sunday, 6th May. Miraculous Thirst, how to get off in days of deprivation runs until Sunday, 6th June.

how to get off in days of deprivation is a query posed by Kathy Acker.




Eimear Walshe - Eimear presents new sculptural works including ‘Triple Bed’, ‘First Date’, ‘Middle Spoon’, and ‘The Third Person’, a set of proposals for how one might thrive in the face of personal and national sexual trauma. The works cast a side-eye at the coerciveness of coupledom and sexual binarisms, and uses the vernaculars which manifest these forces in furniture and grammar to create a new narrative: an idle fantasy, an unholy union, a humdrum pornography recounted by a Venus in Aquarius through objects, words, and diagrams.

Eimear Walshe makes sculptures, writing and research with a focus on queer theory and feminist epistemology. They are a two-time research fellow at the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, where they will next initiate The Department of Sexual Revolution Studies.

Eimear Walshe is supported by the Arts Council of Ireland.

Emma Haugh - Emma presents interconnected new works ‘Flags for Queer Cruising Sites’ and ‘Clothes for Queer Cruisers’ performative, propositional objects, talismans for desire that offer a shifting and connective queer iconography. The works raise questions about the role of social space in shaping identities, the meaning of communal space for marginalised peoples, and the significance of public spaces for social visibility and safety. The works engage queers in collective ephemeral acts of ritualised land and property reclamation developing a shared imagination and re-appropriation of sexual utopias that feed a transformative queer politics, for pleasure, for care, for arsing about, for getting off.

To date ‘Flags for Queer Cruising Sites’ and ‘Clothes for Queer Cruisers’ have been embodied through collaborations with:

Line Skywalker Karlström - http://lineskykarlstrom.blogspot.de

District, Berlin as part of 'Caring for Conflict'-  http://www.district-berlin.com/en/caring-for-conflict/

Emma Haugh is a visual artist and educator based in Dublin and Berlin with an interest in re-orienting attention in relation to cultural narratives, developing work from a working class-queer-feminist questioning of what is missing? A continued engagement with club culture and dyke aesthetics informs the collective making of temporary, autonomous spaces. Emma’s background in working across communities with Augusto Boals’ Theatre of the Oppressed has inflected her work with the particular quality of overlapping critique and proposition making towards shared spaces of potential and alterity.

Together with the curator Suza Husse Emma initiated The Many Headed Hydra, a collective interested in the potential of storytelling and fiction for connecting research, art making and publishing since 2015.

Emma is the editor of  ‘Having a Kiki - Queer Desire & Public Space’ published by PVA, 2016.

Emma Haugh is supported by The Arts Council of Ireland.




Basic Space would like to thank Galway Arts Centre for supporting Miraculous Thirst and we look forward to future endeavours together.

Miraculous Thirst is part of a multi-site programme of exhibitions, residencies and public programmes looking at institutional attitudes, community spaces and education.




Image - ‘Flags for Queer Cruising Sites’ work in process, Emma Haugh, 2018


Documentation Courtesy of Tom Flanagan