In the robing room | Irish Artist's Film Index

In the robing room

Áine Phillips

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Artist's biography

Áine Phillips


Vivienne Dick - Camera
Assistance - Declan Sheridan
Editor - Connie Farrell


In the robing room is a short performance film by Áine Phillips made with Vivienne Dick on camera in 2012. The piece was filmed in the Bishop's Robing Room in Kilkenny as part of Kilkenny Arts Festival curated by Josephine Kelliher that year. The filmed performance is a metaphoric struggle with a distorted, mutated dress that will not fit and is impossible to wear. It was created within an installation of video projections onto long flowing panels of muslin in the darkened 18th century room. This installation was presented widely in Ireland and internationally at exhibitions, screenings and festivals between 2011 and 2018.

Concept & Technique

Conceptually, this piece explores the problematics of the Residential Institutions Redress Board which was charged with compensating those who had suffered physical, sexual and emotional abuse in childcare institutions subject to State regulation in Ireland. Those who received ‘redress’ compensation must adhere to a confidentiality clause that bans them from speaking publicly about their experience. This injustice emerged in Ireland 2010 and mirrored the shameful attitudes to injustice in the past whereby a society of secrecy functions to suppress truth and reparation. To create and film this live performance in a Bishop's Robing Room was a perfect synchronism of poetic justice.


2010 - Right Here Right Now Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin
2011 - [email protected] Occupy Space, Limerick
2012 - Kilkenny Arts Festival
2014 - Eigse, Carlow Arts Festival
2015 - Femlink Screenings: Spain, Bilbao, Espacio Puerta, Croatia
2016 - Femlink Screenings: Lithuania Cinema Center Romuva and Gallery POST. Tengri Umai Art-Gallery, Almaty, Kazakhstan
2018 - Femlink Screenings: Gallery Sitka Fitchburg USA, Galatea Gallery Boston USA and Galway Arts Centre



In the robing room



Key phrases

female history, redress, institutional abuse, performance art




00:02:05 (looped)

Original formats

Digital HD

Screening formats

Digital HD, HD

Aspect ratio






Supported by Kildare County Council, the Arts Council of Ireland and Visual Artists Ireland.
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