Featured Events

The Future of the Mind with Tomás Ryan

Location: Gorey Library

Time: Thursday, 21st November, 7pm – 8pm.

Booking: Free event but booking required - Phone: (053) 9421481 to book.

What is the future of human evolution? As a species, Homo sapiens is only about 100,000 years old. At some point in our early evolution we developed an innate capacity for language that has enabled our apparent success as a species. During this brief moment of evolutionary time humans became the dominant species on the planet. Our population and behavior is rapidly evolving, not at a biological level, but at a cultural one. Language and the outsourcing of information has lead to our runaway pace of cultural change that far outstrips the pace of evolution by natural selection. In my lecture, I will argue that cultural evolution can be rightly considered as a continuation of biological evolution, and furthermore as a means to directing future evolution by natural and cultural selection. I will argue that our instincts are formed by ‘copying’ preexisting memories, and that it may eventually be possible for our future evolution to be driven not just by factors important for basic survival and reproduction rate, but also by our culture and education.

Tomás Ryan is an Assistant Professor of Neuroscience at Trinity College Dublin. He also holds a joint faculty position at the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health at the University of Melbourne, Australia.


School of Looking - A clash of two cultures

Location: National Opera House

Time: Saturday, 16th November, 12.35pm - 2pm.

Booking: Free event but booking required

Public Talk followed by a demonstration and opportunity to try the Meta-perceptual Helmets.

In his seminal 1959 Rede lecture, The Two Cultures and the Scientific Revolution, British novelist and chemist remarked

The clashing point of two subjects, two disciplines, two cultures, of two galaxies…ought to produce creative chances

From a background in architecture, Cleary and Connolly’s work evolved over two decades to embrace science and art as the two inseparable faces of human creativity. They consider that both are necessary to create a balanced, progressive and innovative society and so dedicate their lives to sparking the creative chances that C.P. Snow wished for in his 1959 lecture.

In this talk the artists talk about the accidental meetings and circumstances that lead them to embrace science in their work, from their first encounter with the Vision Lab at Université Paris Descartes right up to the development of Theatre of the Mind, an exhibition of neuroscience in a theatrical setting with David Byrne in New York.

They will discuss the Meta-perceptual Helmets from the first ideas to the final works they became, and discusses the ideas behind Invisible Things, a new collaborative project going beyond the visible spectrum to attempt to see as animals and machines see, with the Crawford Gallery and the Tyndall National Institute in Cork.

Simulating Life on Mars

Location: Wexford County Council, Carricklawn.

Time: Saturday, 16th November, 1.00pm - 1.50pm.

Hear how engineer and performer Niamh Shaw lived through a simulated mission to the Red Planet. This is a talk for families with videos and personal stories about her adventures at the Mars Desert Research Station, in the Utah Desert. This talk was recently presented at New Scientist Live, London and will be taking place as part of the Science Showcase in the Wexford County Council on the 16th of November.

Dr. Niamh Shaw combines performance, writing, and her degrees in science and engineering to ignite people's curiosity about planet Earth and our place in it. As Artist in Residence at CIT Blackrock Castle Observatory, she explores crossovers in STEM, art, space themes & communication to share the human story of science. All of her activities are focused towards fulfilling her life's work to get to space, to challenge perceptions of ourselves, and of our place in Space.


WexSci, Wexford Science Festival promotes science, technology, engineering, arts and maths (STEAM) in Co. Wexford. This year to celebrate science week it invites people from across County Wexford to take part in the over 100 free science events from the 10th-24th of November.

The Festival is led by Wexford County Council in partnership with I.T Carlow, WIT, Waterford Wexford ETB, EPA, BIM and funded by SFI. A two-week festival is planned, with events in libraries, community and family resource centres, in schools and colleges, The County Council Buildings, and the National Opera House. Events will be fun and engaging, with something to interest people of all ages and knowledge.

Wexford has been identified by research from SFI as a low intervention county in terms of STEM participation. With this in mind, we have developed a festival programme to stimulate interest and debate about STEM. Our aim at WexSci is to encourage people to engage with science in a fun and interactive way. We want to talk to the amateur and the professional, the curious and all wishing to follow a career in science. We hope to engage and inspire people of all ages, and to promote awareness and understanding of the importance and relevance of STEM to everyday life.

The highlight of the festival is the WexSci Science Showcase, taking place at Wexford County Council and the National Opera House on Saturday 16th November from 10:30am to 4pm. A curated selection of events will deliver great STEM learning opportunities for all ages and abilities. There is something for everyone at WexSci, do take part, and bring your family and friends.

We look forward to meeting you and we hope you enjoy the festival - WexSci Wexford Science Festival Steering Committee.