Actor, writer, and musician Ikenna Anywabuike collaborated with designer and visual artist Maclaine Black to create ‘I Know the Sun Must Set’ – a multimedia based exploration of grief through the medium of poetry, music, and artistic installation. The show was exhibited at Galway’s 126 Art Gallery in April 2023. Inspiration for this exhibition comes from multiple losses, both personal and the shared communal losses experienced during the Covid-19 pandemic.
‘I Know the Sun Must Set’ is also influenced by Ikenna’s desire to communicate and express the inner complexities of human emotions, and to show there is no step-by-step guide for coping with bereavements. The loss of innocence, time, and connection are all compounded by grief, and can be influenced by the nature of a person’s death on those left behind. Having suffered several bereavements in the past few years, this is a subject very close to Ikenna’s heart. For example the grief Ikenna experienced following the loss of grandfather differed hugely to the grief experienced following the sudden death of a close friend.
As a result, Ikenna believes art should respond to the needs of the community and help people to develop a greater understanding of themselves and the world around them. ‘I Know the Sun Must Set’ was initially scheduled for a three-day exhibition at 126 Gallery. However, due to public demand it was extended a further three days.
Below is a taster of a film screened at exhibition featuring queer, non-binary performance artist, dancer, and drag artist Leigh Greally (they/them).
About Ikenna Anyabuike
Ikenna Anyabuike is a Nigerian-Irish actor, writer, and musician based in Oranmore, Galway. His multi-cultural background and interest in art led him to enrol in Drama and Theatre with Psychology at the University of Galway. Gaining his roots in poetry, Ikenna came third place in the 2020 Connacht Poetry Grand Slam and went on to compete as a quarterfinalist in the UNISLAM Poetry competition.
During 2020, in response to discussions around racial injustice, he co-created ‘Solidarity Amongst All’, a collection of art and poetry from local artists. Additionally, Ikenna has collaborated with ‘Active Consent’ aiding in the development of and acting in their touring play ‘The Kinds of Sex You might Have at College’. He has also been a part of the ‘Baptiste Programme’ a playwrighting mentorship in conjunction with Smock Alley.
About Maclaine Black
Galway raised and now based in Cork, Maclaine Black is a photographer, filmmaker and visual artist. Maclaine’s work focuses primarily on portraiture and events in the techno scene, almost exclusively in black and white. They are inspired by the beauty in abstraction, skewing the decipherable. Maclaine is currently studying filmmaking and video production in Cork and Dublin.