Visual Arts in Cork

Visual arts are original pictorial, graphic or sculptural works. In Cork, this includes a wide range of contemporary and traditional art practices.

Despite the positivity that the Cork focus designation has generated amongst many practitioners, some worry about a lack of resources in the future. For instance, Deirdre Nolan of the Backwater Artists group is concerned that infrastructural developments may divert artistic energy away from studio practice.

The Crawford Gallery

Located in the heart of Cork city, The Crawford Gallery is committed to fostering recognition, critical assessment and acknowledgement of historical and contemporary Irish art practice. Through temporary exhibitions, publications and education programmes.

The Gallery’s collection was long associated with the Art School that once occupied its present building, in the former Custom House. Therefore, it includes works by the teachers and students of the School.

The Crawford is also home to the famous Canova Casts, which were gifted to the city nearly two centuries ago. Well-known 20th century Irish artists like Sean Keating, Harry Clarke, Norah McGuinness, Mainie Jellet and Jack B Yeats feature in the gallery’s historic collection. The modern collection includes works by Eilis O’Connell, Maud Cotter and Hughie O’Donoghue. The Gallery also hosts many temporary and travelling exhibitions.

The Triskel Arts Centre

The Triskel Arts Centre is a multi-disciplinary arts venue in Cork, Ireland. It hosts a variety of events, including film, music, and literature. It also has a library and bookshop. It is home to a variety of art exhibitions and is one of the leading venues for Irish performing arts.

Its newest project, a Foghorn Sound Work by Danny McCarthy, responds to the gallery’s historic context and the city’s maritime heritage. It recalls the foghorn’s role as a symbol of protection for diverse peoples, seafaring travellers, and inter-continental shipping.

The Crawford Gallery is a VAT registered venue. Unless otherwise agreed, all rates quoted are inclusive of VAT. Box Office receipts and fees will be deducted from the hire fee. The Hirer must advise Triskel of all technical requirements in writing no less than 6 weeks prior to the event.

The Cork Arts Society

We maximise our city’s arts and cultural heritage buildings including the Lavit Gallery on Wandesford Quay which is home to Backwater Artists Group and Cork Printmakers. The gallery is a bright open space flooded with natural light and it showcases Contemporary Art in a setting that is both historic and modern.

The Lavit Gallery has several exhibition staples in its calendar CASe (the Cork Arts Society exhibition), an annual selected members’ show and Spring, Summer and Christmas Shows. The gallery is a not for profit and its board are passionate that visual artists should have an outlet in the city.

The National Sculpture Factory

The National Sculpture Factory (NSF) offers artists large studio space, complemented by ancillary support including equipment, training, lectures and residencies. It is also a participating venue for the prestigious PEACE programme for young European artists.

The NSF organises art projects throughout the year, often collaborating with galleries or festivals. Cork Ignite, by Simon McKeown, was a hugely ambitious live art project that explored disability and technology on a grand scale.

Graft is a new contemporary sculpture trail throughout Cork City centre. It combines the production, curation and engagement skills of the Glucksman with the NSF’s studios and its extensive sculptural network. The work of the five commissioned artists transforms, disrupts and celebrates the city’s existing built environment. Each artwork reveals and presents itself at a different point in time dictated by the movement of the tidal river, shift to evening light or opening hours of city centres and cultural institutions.

The Sirius Project

Amid the optimism surrounding the city’s designation as a visual arts focus, some of its practitioners express cautiousness that this could divert resources to structural developments at the expense of artistic practice. In particular, a concern that the designate-mentioned institutions might be compelled to compete for funding with other cultural organisations in Cork.

Sirius Arts Centre, located in Cobh, a pretty port town that once served as the departure point for generations of Irish emigrants, is currently hosting an exhibition of Anton Vidokle’s Institute of the Cosmos. The show comprises a series of films that explore themes such as biopolitics, immortalism, interplanetarianism, revolution, nutrition, utopia and resurrection. A gallery dedicated to the project also features a selection of texts on these subjects. The exhibition runs until February 25.

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