A Bottle of Stout in Every Pub in Buncrana, ACA Public, 2016
First exhibited at Derry’s Orchard Gallery in 1978, John Carson’s A Bottle of Stout in Every Pub in Buncrana has since become a fabled artwork. Did Carson manage to drink in all of Buncrana’s 22 bars in just one day? Did he succeed in persuading Guinness to sponsor this endeavour? These are questions still asked, as rumours of his
pub-crawl-as-art still abound.
As part of ACA Public, a publishing initiative by Sean Lynch and Michelle Horrigan exploring the multifaceted nature of the public realm, Askeaton Contemporary Arts reissued Carson’s original artist book of documents and letters, alongside an interview with him and new recollections revealed by Bernie McAnaney - Carson’s guardian on that day. Accompanied by additional images from Gerard Byrne, Jan Dibbets and Reiner Ruthenbeck, the ethics of marketing and advertising, the various goings-on of a small town on the Irish border, and the myth and reality of the sturdy Irish drinker all prominently feature.
Reproduced in a risograph format and co-designed by Wayne Daly and artist Nick Davies, A Bottle of Stout... featured in events and exhibitions throughout 2016 at Flat Time House, London, Emily Carr University of Art and Design, Vancouver, and CCA Derry-Londonderry.