Jobs-o-rama & other arts news

Drawsoc - UCD's Visual Arts Society - during Fresher's Week

Drawsoc – UCD’s Visual Arts Society – during Fresher’s Week

The autumn is speeding by like a freight train – hard to believe we’re already in Week 5, here in bella Belfield. A few bits and pieces on this sunny Wednesday:

  • Jobs have been recently refreshed, in case you’re looking!
  • Very proud of the lovely folks over at UCD Drawsoc (our visual art student society) who signed up 400+ new members during Fresher’s Week, and also made this fab video showcasing their activities and those of the other student societies here at UCD. They are doing great work to promote arts practice & creative expression here on campus, and to be a welcoming community for all new students! They are amazing.
  • UCD Art History is turning 50! To mark the founding of our programme (the first degree in art history on the island), we’re having a day of celebrations and a reunion, on the 28th of November, culminating with a keynote by Dr Brian Kennedy, director of the Toledo Museum of Art (Ohio). Registrations are now being taken for what’s going to be an epic day!
  • The deadline for responses to the proposed National Cultural Policy 2025 has been extended to 31 October; there is also a series of regional consultations by the Department of Arts, Heritage & the Galetacht ongoing throughout October around the country – check the schedule if you’re interested in attending.
  • Places are filling fast for the event ‘The Creative Museum: Extending Participation Through Collaboration’ — a wonderful two days in Belfast, highly subsidised for students, that will explore how creative arts practice is being integrated by museums. A wonderful chance also to sample the delights of the Belfast Festival and Belfast Open Studios! I’ll be bringing a group of around 20 from UCD — come join us and all the others from both north & south who will be attending.
  • Along with a great list of speakers, I’ll be participating in the conference Designing Commemoration: Performance, Participation and Process, this Thursday/Friday, organised by Dr Kathryn Milligan and Dr Niamh NicGhabann.
  • My colleague Dr Emilie Pine who coordinates the Memory Studies Network here at UCD has launched a new website – a great portal for anyone interested in research on this subject (including lots of podcasts, including one from me!)
  • Many of us who work in the visual arts bid farewell yesterday to Jason Oakley, the Publications Manager for many years at Visual Artists Ireland (and tireless arts champion and enthusiast), who died a few days ago. He was my editor for a number of years, and a friend — and I hope he would have been chuffed by all the love expressed for him over the last week, and how much he will be missed.

Autumn arts highlights – a thumbnail guide for new Dubliners

A few of our 23 new MA students in Arts Mgmt & Cult. Policy, enjoying the sunshine at the Chester Beatty Library

Some of our 23 new MA students in Arts Mgmt & Cult. Policy, enjoying the sunshine after orientation at the Chester Beatty Library

We’ve just begun a new term at University College Dublin — for me that means 140 fresh new faces in first year art history, and 35 new MAs in both Art History, and Arts Management & Cultural Policy.

Lots of folks joining us are new to Dublin — we have postgraduate students this year from Italy, Greece, Hungary, Belgium, Lebanon, Kazakhstan, China, Iran, and the U.S. — as well as students from across Ireland, North and South. We are also celebrating our 50th anniversary as a UCD School this autumn, with other events TBA. It’s going to be a super year!

Dubliners can take for granted that autumn is chock-a-block with arts events… but it’s worth pointing out a few highlights for those new to our fair city:

  • The Irish Museum of Modern Art’s major new exhibition ‘What We Call Love’ is opening this weekend (11 Sept). There will be lots of events happening (including the free opening party this Friday evening from 6.30-9.30 — with free access, special talks, food vendors, dj etc. — IMMA openings are always great craic) Lots of other things on offer too, including family events over the weekend.
  • The Tiger Dublin Fringe Festival (7-20 Sept) has just begun — many of our former students now work for this, as managers or producers! They also have a special range of 21 euro tickets to celebrate their 21st birthday this year:
  • The Dublin Theatre Festival begins in late September, just after Fringe (24 Sept – 11 Oct)- it’s the largest theatre festival of the year. Worth checking out tickets now, as lots of things sell out!
  • Culture Night: Unmissable – it’s Friday, 18 September, and every year it amazes me how packed city centre gets with folks wandering from one venue to the next. It’s nation-wide, and everything is FREE! One of the best nights of the year, and a great buzz throughout the city. It gets very busy though, and popular places fill up fast, so have a plan of attack! (p.s. if you want to see something v quirky, I always recommend the Freemason’s Hall, just beside the National Library & Museum)
  • Open House Dublin (14-18 October) — if you’re interested in architecture, or just like to have a nosy around people’s homes — this is the biggest architectural event of the year. Tons of great talks, debates, and most importantly, tours of public & private buildings across Dublin.

Have I missed anything? Let me know in the comments…

The Creative Museum: Extending Participation through Collaboration (23/24 October, Belfast)

Greetings! I’m back from my annual leave and will be updating the jobs page shortly have just refreshed job/internship listings.

The Spy at the Gate by Pauline Cummins, 2014 - part of These Immovable Walls: Performing Power at Dublin Castle, curated by Michelle Browne. Photo by Joseph Carr.

The Spy at the Gate by Pauline Cummins, 2014 – part of These Immovable Walls: Performing Power at Dublin Castle, curated by Michelle Browne. Photo by Joseph Carr.

I wanted to share details of a special Irish Museums Association event I’m co-organising with Dr Victoria Durrer of Queen’s University Belfast. It’s absolutely FREE for students and members of the IMA, and very low cost for other attendees:

23 -24 October – The Creative Museum: Extending Participation through Collaboration: Queen’s University Belfast

This two-day event will bring together artists and museum professionals to explore the opportunities, complexities and negotiations that take place when museums and artists in dance, visual arts, sound, and theatre collaborate to create unique visitor experiences. This event will present and examine – through a series of talks, practical examples and site visits – some of the approaches taken by museums in the Republic of Ireland (ROI), Northern Ireland (NI), and further afield, in creative collaborations with the broader arts sector. It will aim to discuss how organisations can enhance their relationship with the public and demonstrate their value and relevance in contemporary culture.

Speakers include:

Lar Joye, Assistant Keeper, National Museum of Ireland – Art and Industrial Division
Louise Lowe, Artistic Director, ANU Productions
Professor Pedro Rebelo, Director of Research, School of Creative Arts (incl. SARC), Queen’s University Belfast
Katie Green, Founder and Director, Made by Katie Green
Margaret Henry, Chief Executive, Audiences NI
Michelle Browne, Visual Artist and Curator
Hugh Maguire, Director, The Hunt Museum
Nigel Monaghan, Keeper, National Museum of Ireland – Natural History Division
Emily Mark-FitzGerald, Lecturer, School of Art History & Cultural Policy, University College Dublin

The second day of the event is dedicated to site visits and tours that will introduce participants to the cultural venues and offerings of Belfast — it will be open to explore! A full list of options will soon be available on the event website. The event coincides with the Belfast Festival, and we’ll have ticket options available.

Thanks to sponsorship from the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, we’re able to offer this event for FREE for students & IMA members, including registration, and free transport from Dublin – Belfast (return). Attendees will be responsible for accommodation (1 night – many inexpensive hostel options available) and the networking dinner (optional).

Registration is open here:

Our previous north-south event reached capacity, do register asap. Attendees are also encouraged to book accommodation soon, as it’s festival season in Belfast and can get very busy. Hope you can join us!