Visual Artists Ireland News


If you have recently been involved in a public commission, percent for art project, socially-engaged project or any other form of ‘art outside the gallery’ we would like you to email us the information for publication in the next issue of the Visual Artists News Sheet.

• Artist name(s)
• Title of work
• Commissioning body
• Date advertised
• Date sited/carried out
• Budget
• Commission type
• Project Partners
• Brief description of the work (300 words)
• A high-resolution, print-quality image (300 dpi; minimum 2000 pixels in width and height)

Artworks or projects must have been undertaken in the last six months, to be included in this section. We only have space for up to four public art items per issue, so not all proposals can be included. Where possible, proposals that do not make it into one issue will be included in the next.

Public Art Roundup proposals for the March/April Issue of the VAN should be sent to chris@visualartists.ie by Wednesday 14 February.

Profile Your Public Art in the Visual Artists’ News Sheet


The Visual Artists’ News Sheet (VAN ) is the primary all-Ireland information resource for visual artists. In the Columns for this issue, Áine Phillips offers a topical overview of gender issues in the arts, while Fiona Woods discusses best practice in artist-focused commissioning in her column ‘Has the Artist Been Consulted?’. In the NI column, Joey O’Gorman outlines his experiences as former co-director of Catalyst Arts, Belfast.

In the Artists’ Publishing section, Andy Parsons and Glenn Holman discuss their recent artists’ publication, The Rebel(s), while Ben Weir outlines his recent book, published in response to urban redevelopment in Belfast City Centre. In the Public Art section, Christopher Steenson interviews Robin Price about his recent environmental public art project, Automated Bird Rave Generator, while Laurie Kilmurry interviews Jenny Haughton about the evolution of the Grangegorman public art programme.

In the Organisation Profiles for this issue, Alan Phelan interviews Mary Cremin about her new role and upcoming programme at Void, Derry, while Nuala Clarke reports on the Ballinglen Arts Foundation and fellowship programme in County Mayo, which has just celebrated 25 years.

This issue features several Festival and Conference reports: Don O’Mahony reports on Sonic Vigil 10; Jane Morrow reports on Belfast Open Studios and Joanne Laws reports from IVARO’s Artist’s Estate Management conference, hosted by the RHA in late November.

In the How is it Made? section, Matt Packer interviews John Rainey about the evolution of his sculptural practice. In the Career Development section, Manuela Pacella interviews Andreas Kindler Von Knobloch about his recent residency at Catalyst Arts, Belfast. In addition, Chris Hayes’s extended essay assesses the contributions of James Merrigan’s Billion blog to Irish art criticism.

The Regional Profile for this issue comes from the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon region (ACBC Borough), outlining recent cultural activities of: The Market Place Theatre, Armagh; F.E. McWilliam Gallery, Banbridge; Craigavon Arts Office; and Millennium Court Arts Centre, Portadown. In addition, artist Joanne Proctor discusses the reality of maintaining an art practice in the region, while Paul King provides an update from the SHORE Collective.

Reviewed in the Critique section are: Yvonne McGuinness at Draíocht Arts Centre; Brígh Strawbridge-O’Hagan at Birr Theatre and Arts Centre; ‘The Otherworld Hall’ at Solstice Arts Centre; and Robert and Barbara Ellison at The Island Art Centre, Lisburn.

As ever, we have details of upcoming VAI Professional Development Programme, exhibition and public art roundups, news from the sector and current opportunities.

Members of VAI receive a copy of the VAN delivered straight to their door. The News Sheet is also available to pick up free of charge in galleries and arts centres. Selected articles featured in the print edition are available at the Visual Artists’ News Sheet Online here: www.visualartistsireland.com.

Out Now | January – February 2018 Issue of the ...


Art Prize 2018

The prize is open to all professional artists resident in Northern Ireland and all Visual Artists Ireland members in the Republic of Ireland working in all visual art forms at all career stages.

In its third year the Prize is directed at visual artists at all career stages. This year will provide a two month research based residency in The Irish Cultural Centre in Paris. The prize covers accommodation, one return flight, and a stipend of €700 per month. The prize offers great opportunities for visual artists to tap into the resources of the CCI and the City of Light, as well as being an important means of showcasing Ireland’s dynamic contemporary culture on an international stage.

How to apply

Please submit an on-line application form via the CCI website until 10 January 2018, 5pm GMT for residencies between August 2018 and July 2019. Applications by post or e-mail cannot be accepted. Application form

A clear indication of the focus of the residency will be required together with a record of professional achievement: details of publications, exhibitions, performances, compositions, prizes, awards and related aspects of practice, as well as experience of other residencies. Visual artists must have had at least one solo exhibition and writers one published work.

Please ensure that you tick the box for the Suki Tea Art Prize in the application form so that it can be considered. Republic of Ireland applicants must also include their up to date VAI membership number. Failure to do so will mean that you will not be considered for the prize.

Assessment Panel

The Assessment Panel will comprise of representatives from The Irish Cultural Centre, Visual Artists Ireland, and a representative from Suki Tea.

Terms and Conditions

  1. You must be a professional artist either resident in Northern Ireland or a member of Visual Artists Ireland in the Republic of Ireland to enter.
  2. The residency is open to practitioners in all visual art forms, within the limits of the facilities available in the Centre.
  3. The bursary covers travel and accommodation in the Centre Culturel Irlandais. The artist is expected to spend the period agreed in the Centre.
  4. Each resident artist will receive a stipend of €700 per month.
  5. The artist in residence will be asked to participate in the cultural programme of the Centre Culturel Irlandais.

Our Sponsor:

Northern Ireland based Suki Tea specialise in artisan loose leaf teas. First set up in 2005 by business partners Annie and Oscar who were inspired by their travels in Asia where they had the opportunity to taste many different types of really (really) good ethically-sourced teas, which they wanted to share with everyone. They have since made ethical sourcing their priority whilst delivering the finest loose leaf teas, herbal infusions and fruit blends to their customers. Winners of over 37 Great Taste Awards and multiple industry awards Suki Tea truly is ‘Tea as it should be’.

Our Project Partners: Centre Culturel Irlandais and Arts & Business Northern Ireland

Applications are invited for the 2018 Visual Artists Ireland Suki ...





The Visual Artists’ News Sheet (VAN ) is the primary all-Ireland information resource for visual artists. In the columns for this issue, Nick Miller discusses his role as curator of the RDS Visual Arts Awards 2017, while CEO of Visual Artists Ireland, Noel Kelly, offers insights into artistic censorship in Ireland. The NI column comes from Ben Crothers, who outlines the evolution of the long-running monthly event, Late Night Art Belfast.

This issue includes several conference reports: Joanne Laws and Christopher Steenson report on VAI’s Get Together 2017 at IMMA; Sarah Kelleher discusses ‘FIRST EDITION’ – a print symposium at Millennium Hall, organised by Cork Printmakers; Ciaran Smyth reports from Toronto, Canada, on ‘The Creative Time Summit 2017’; and Sue Rainsford outlines the ‘Art & Trauma’ seminar at The LAB, Dublin.
Continuing the theme of art and trauma, EL Putnam explores the work of County Down-based glassmaker, Alison Lowry, in the ‘How is it Made?’ section. Louise Manifold discusses her upcoming project ‘AerialSparks!’ commissioned for the Galway 2020 European City of Culture. In the Career Development section, Melissa O’Flaherty discusses the themes that underpin her practice, while Sarah Hayden interviews Pádraig Spillane about his recent work and solo exhibition ‘What Passes Between Us’.

Seoidín O’Sullivan reports on her recent socially-engaged residency in Chicago; Rebecca Strain outlines ‘The Unfamiliar Familiar’ – a project by artist Sue Morris commissioned by the Dementia Services Development Trust; and Stephen Rennicks presents several case studies that explore the ‘afterlife’ of public artworks. From a material culture perspective, Lisa Godson examines the banners created by the Artists’ Campaign to Repeal the Eighth Amendment, situating them within the broader history of social protest movements. In the Artists’ Publishing section, Ciarán Walsh discusses his novellas, Vortices and The Sickness, Book One, while Stephen Brandes outlines The food, the bad and the ugly, a new publication by the Domestic Godless.

The Regional Profile for this issue comes from Mid Ulster, outlining recent cultural activities of the Arts Office and the Seamus Heaney HomePlace. In addition, artists Brian Kielt and Trina Hobson discuss the realities of maintaining an art practice in the region.

Reviewed in the Critique section are: Kate Nolan at the Gallery of Photography; Pádraig Spillane at Sirius Arts Centre; Cliona Harmey, Seán Molloy and David Quinn at Solstice Arts Centre; Pat Collins and Paul Mosse at VISUAL; and ‘The Way Things Go: An Homage’ at the Butler Gallery.

As ever, we have details of upcoming VAI Professional Development Programme, exhibition and public art roundups, news from the sector and current opportunities.

Members of VAI receive a copy of the VAN delivered straight to their door. The News Sheet is also available to pick up free of charge in galleries and arts centres. Selected articles featured in the print edition are available at the Visual Artists’ News Sheet Online here: www.visualartistsireland.com.

Out Now | November – December 2017 Issue of the ...



Deadline: 1 December

If you have recently been involved in a public commission, percent for art project, socially engaged project or any other form of ‘art outside the gallery’ we would like you to email us the information for publication in the the next issue of the Visual Artists News Sheet.
Send images (3-4MB in size) and a short text (no more than around 300 words) in the following format:

* Artist’s name
* Title of work
* Commissioning body
* Date advertised
* Date sited / carried out
* Budget
* Commission type
* Project Partners
* Brief description of the work

Work must have been undertaken in the last 6 months.

Send your info to Production Editor Chris Steenson at: chris@visualartists.ie

Profile Your Public Art in the Visual Artists’ News Sheet ...


Visual Artists Ireland Residency Award Save my progress and resume later | Resume a previously saved form Resume Later In order to be able to resume this form later, please enter your email and choose a password. Your Email: A Password: Confirm Password: in partnership with The Tyrone Guthrie Centre  […]

Visual Artists Ireland Residency Award 2018 – Call for Applications ...


OVER 250 BELFAST ARTISTS OPEN THEIR DOORS TO THE PUBLIC, 21 OCTOBER 2017 11am to 5pm, Various Venues

Belfast Open Studios, now in its sixth year, is an opportunity for the public to come and see how artists work and to take a glimpse into their creative processes.

Belfast is home to over 250 professional artists; painting, drawing, performing, filming and creating. A public open day on Saturday 21 October will enable you to see behind closed doors, in nooks and crannies of the city, artists are at work developing the seeds of ideas that result in artworks often shown in galleries, museums, art centres, artist-led spaces and various venues.

Fifteen studios across the city are opening their doors from 14 October to 5 November for this unique, free event. We’re delighted to welcome four new studio groups to the Open Studios portfolio: Belfast Bankers in the East, Duncairn Arts Centre in the North, Studio Souk in the city centre and Embrace Studios in the West, who will be launching their brand new space and programme during Belfast Open Studios. Other participating studios include: Array Studios, Artists at the Mill, Cathedral Studios, Creative Exchange, Digital Arts Studios, Flax Art Studios, Lombard Studios, Orchid Studios, Platform Arts, Pollen Studios and QSS Bedford Street.

Accompanied by an extensive workshops and events programme, including a Visual Artists’ Caf’ which introduces the different spaces and initiatives to the public and peers, a series of talks, Speed Curating and Clinics events; this is the most packed programme to date. Belfast Open Studios is delighted to partner with Belfast International Festival for the sixth year in a row and to represent its primary visual art programming. All event tickets can be purchased through the Festival website.

Sponsored by local artisan tea makers Suki Tea, Belfast Open Studios events offer a warm welcome to all with a cup of Belfast Brew on arrival before they take a relaxed and informative stroll around the various studios, open from 11am to 5pm.

Belfast Open Studios is grateful for the support of Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Belfast City Council, Belfast International Festival, The British Council and Arts & Business NI.

Additional information is available at www.belfastopenstudios.com

Belfast Open Studios | Saturday 21 October 2017



September – October 2017 is a themed issue that focuses on contemporary Irish painting, offering timely insights into recent exhibitions, seminars, residencies and current studio practices. With so many vibrant painters currently working in Ireland and a wealth of painting exhibitions taking place nationwide, this thematic inquiry cannot be comprehensive. The issue places emphasis on materiality and the making process, while touching on discourse specific to the medium of painting.

The Visual Artists’ News Sheet is the primary all-Ireland information resource for visual artists presenting case study articles on all aspects of the lives of professional artists, alongside features offering critical reflection and analysis of relevant aspects of the art world in Ireland and internationally.

Members of VAI receive a copy of the VAN delivered straight to their door. The News Sheet is also available to pick up free of charge in galleries and arts centres. Selected articles featured in the print edition are available at the Visual Artists’ News Sheet Online here: www.visualartistsireland.com.

In this Issue:

A series of extended essays has been commissioned to provide thematic surveys of contemporary Irish painting: Ramon Kassam examines representations of the landscape; Mark O’Kelly discusses recent developments in portraiture; and Alison Pilkington offers valuable insights into contemporary abstract painting.

In the columns for this issue, Colin Martin introduces ‘The Materiality of Painting’ – an upcoming lecture series at the RHA that seeks to explore material concerns specific to current painting practice. VAI NI Manager Rob Hilken discusses the trajectory of painting in Northern Ireland, while Marcus Cope outlines the evolution of the Marmite Prize for Painting. Also in this issue, Susan Connolly reports on her residency in Golden Paints, New York, while Marc Guinan discusses the seminar he organised at The LAB, Dublin, entitled ‘Painters Talking Paint’. In the organisation profiles, Ronan Lyons discusses the Molesworth Gallery, Dublin, while Valerie Ceregini interviews three painters – Colm MacAthlaoich, Natasha Conway and Dennis Kelly – who will present solo exhibitions at Pallas Projects and Studios in the autumn.

In the ‘How is it Made?’ section, James Merrigan discusses All or Nothing, his new documentary film about painting. Ailve McCormack interviews Mark Francis in his London studio, while Helen G. Blake talks about her painting practice. Interviews by Joanne Laws and Martin Herbert offer insights into the work of Elizabeth Magill and Ronnie Hughes, to coincide with their high-profile touring exhibitions. Joanne Laws also interviews three Irish painters at various stages of their careers – Jane Rainey, Ciarán Murphy and Robert Armstrong – about the realities of maintaining a painting practice in Ireland.

Reviewed in this issue’s extended Critique section are: ‘Painting NOW’ at Green on Red Gallery; ‘Memory Needs a Landscape’ at Taylor Galleries; ‘The Living and the Dead’ at Temple Bar Gallery and Studios; ‘International Ireland’ at the Ulster Museum; ‘Crooked Orbit’ at Kevin Kavanagh; ‘Faith After Saenredam and Other Paintings’ at Kerlin Gallery; ‘A Dream and an Argument’ at The MAC; and ‘What We Do in the Shadows’ at Almine Rech Gallery, Brussels.

As ever, we have details of upcoming VAI Professional Development Programme, exhibition and public art roundups, news from the sector and current opportunities.

Out Now | September – October 2017 Issue of the ...