Wishing you a very special Autumn Equinox.
On the Autumn Equinox, day and night are of equal length and it marks the end of Summer, and the halfway point in the year between the Summer and Winter solstices. The Autumn Equinox arrives at 2:30pm (GMT) on Tuesday, September 22, 2020.
At dawn today (Tues 22 September), by the River Corrib in Galway, the Straw Boys, remade virtually, on the LED wall of Mirror Pavilion, Corn Work by John Gerrard, also change with the seasons. We see the Autumn characters - now dressed in Rye Straw - walking into the work (virtually) and swapping out Summer one character at a time.
The Straw Boys commemorate attitudes toward agriculture and the landscape and the straw reflects the historic grains of Ireland:
Spring is dressed in Barley Straw
Summer is dressed in Oat Straw
Autumn is dressed in Rye Straw
Winter is dressed in Wheat Straw
For our ancestors, the Equinox provided a pause between autumn and winter and was considered a meaningful time of the year to honour the harvest as the stocks for winter were hoped to be plentiful. These changing seasons are key points in the cycle of life in nature, and in ancient times many cultures perceived a powerful deeper message for humanity.
Rituals were held at this time to cleanse out the old and welcome in the new. Perhaps we can all take some inspiration from this today.
Read more about Mirror Pavilion by John Gerrard. Now on at Claddagh Quay in Galway until 26 September. Mirror Pavilion will then move to Connemara from 11-31 October.
Photos: Emilija Jefremova
Event Update: Due to unfavourable weather, the live-stream of the Autumn Equinox sunrise will not go ahead as planned. View the sunrise gallery on the main image at the top of the page or view on GIAF's Facebook page.