20-20 April 2011


Tickets: 10


Wednesday 20th April 2011, 10.30am – 5.30pm

Work it. is the second meeting of the Visual Arts Workers Forum, begun in VISUAL Centre for Contemporary Art, Carlow, in  November 2010. It aims to bring together arts workers in the visual arts, and to enable the sharing of information, ideas and strategies.

Speakers include Tania Banotti (Theatre Forum), Isabel Nolan (Artist), Valerie Connor (Freelance), Tessa Giblin (Project Arts Centre, Dublin), Sarah Glennie (National Campaign for the Arts), Dylan Haskins (student and Founder, Exchange Dublin), Michele Horrigan (Askeaton Contemporary Arts, Limerick), Finola Jones (Mother’s Tankstation, Dublin), Rosie Lynch (Independent Curator), Mary McCarthy (National Sculpture Factory, Cork), Ruairí Ó Cuív (Dublin City Council), Theo Sims (Context Gallery, Derry) and Mick Wilson (Graduate School of Creative Arts and Media, Dublin).

Programme for the day

10.30 – 11.00   Morning Glory (coffee and greetings)

11.00                Welcome everyone!

11.10 – 12.15   What’s new Pussycat?

12.15 – 1.00     Chow & Chat (lunch)

1.00 – 2.15      What do we want and how are we going to get there?

2.15 – 2.30      Give me a Break (15 minutes recess)

2.30 – 3.45       Ethical Attitudes

3.45 – 5.00       Open discussion

5.00 – 6.00      Have we met? (drinks and nibbles)

Session 1 – What’s new Pussycat? (11.00am – 12.15pm)

Challenge and innovation: more than ever, visual arts workers are facing the need to change, to adapt to new operating systems, budgets and policies, and to find creative solutions to formidable problems. Often reluctant to accept change, institutions are also undergoing self-inflicted surgery to try to grow artistically while shrinking economically, and to constantly step away from the coal face to consider communications, audiences, and the potential reach of contemporary art. This session aims to bring to light the most prominent problems facing four Visual Arts Workers, and the most creative, inventive, commonsensical or absurd ways forward that might help to inspire all of us working in the sector. Challenge and innovation – sometimes real innovation is born through adversity.

Chair: Tessa Giblin (Curator, Project Arts Centre, Dublin)

Speakers: Michele Horrigan (Curator, Askeaton Contemporary Arts, Limerick), Theo Sims (Director, Context Gallery, Derry), Cliodhna Shaffrey (Board Member TBG&S), Vaari Claffey (Freelance curator)

Format: 10 minute presentations

— Chow & Chat (lunch) —-

Session 2 – What do we want and how are we going to get there? (1.00pm – 2.15pm)

Action and unity: The National Campaign for the Arts kick started in 2010 amidst fear and worry about the financial future of the arts in Ireland. The campaign is lobbying to ensure the arts are on local and national government agendas and recognised as a vital part of contemporary Irish life. How can visual arts workers respond positively to the challenges facing the arts? Do we need to unite with other lobbying groups or fight our own corner? This session proposes to highlight key questions through debate.

Chair: Sarah Glennie (Director, Irish Film Institute, Dublin)

Speakers: Isabel Nolan (Artist), Tania Banotti (Chief Executive, Theatre Forum, Dublin), Dylan Haskins (student, Founder, Exchange Dublin), Mary McCarthy (National Sculpture Factory, Cork)

Format: panel debate / interview

— Give me a break (15 minutes recess) —-

Session 3 – Ethical Attitudes (2.30pm – 3.45pm)

Contemporary art constitutes a vast, unregulated sector, and although Ireland’s market is still at an early stage in development, the institutional, freelance and self employed arts workers of Ireland have little in the way of codes of best practice or even acceptable limits to guide them in our best to do business fairly. This session aims to prise apart attitudes to fiscal transparency, the use and advantages of contracts, the relationship of the visual arts in Ireland to the international art market, and the problems and pitfalls of working within an unregulated system. If your ethical attitude within the visual arts is of your own making, what do workers today find important to fight for – for artists, for stakeholders, and for themselves?

Chair: Ruairí Ó Cuív (Public Art Manager, Dublin City Council)

Speakers: Valerie Connor (Freelance), Finola Jones (Director, Mother’s Tankstation, Dublin), Rosie Lynch (Independent Curator), Mick Wilson (Dean, The Graduate School of Creative Arts and Media, Dublin)

Format: three 10 minute presentations

For updates on key speakers and information, see https://www.visualartsworkersforum.blogspot.com/ or friend us on Facebook.

Ticket charge:

€10 for Independent practitioners

€25 for those institutionally affiliated

Both charges include a light lunch and refreshments.


For further information, email us at: vawforum@gmail.com

Performance Dates, Tickets and Information

10.30am – 5.30pm 20 Apr 2011~


€10 for Independent practitioners

€25 for those institutionally affiliated

Duration – 10.30am – 5.30pm


BOOKING: (+353 1) 881 9613


Group discounts available in advance only, ask to speak to Melanie or email melanie@projectartscentre.ie (Mon-Fri during office hours) Seating

Our seating is unreserved so you will choose your seat on the night of the performance. We advise you to arrive at least 10 minutes before the start time as we are unable to seat patrons once a performance has begun.

Before the show, why not…?

…have a look around our gallery. During exhibitions our gallery is open Mon-Sat from 11AM until the performance begins…. …or catch up with your friends by having a drink in our bar. We offer a full bar service so if you just can’t wait to talk about the show join us afterwards for another. Parking Offer

Present your Project Art Centre ticket (evening performances only) at the Fleet Street Car Park and you will qualify for a special fixed price of just €5. Ask at box office for more information. Hungry?

Want to grab a bite to eat before the show? Why not pop down to Milano Restaurant in Temple Bar and pick their pre-theatre menu – Pizza, Pasta or Salad plus and a glass of wine – for just €12.50. Available from 5pm -7pm, just show your tickets or email booking confirmation to avail of this offer.

And if you’re in a rush remember that Milano also delivers to Project Arts Centre. Choose from a range of delicious made to order pizzas delivered to you in our bar. No queues and no need to even leave the building. Ask a member of our bar staff for more


For further information, email us at: vawforum@gmail.com 

Work it. is the 2nd Visual Arts Workers Forum, initiated at Visual, Carlow, by Carissa Farrell and Emma-Lucy O’Brien. Work it. has been developed by Tessa Giblin, Project Arts Centre, Ruairí Ó Cuív, Dublin City Council, and Independent Curators Emma-Lucy O’ Brien, Anne Lynott and Rachael Gilbourne.

For updates on key speakers and information, see https://www.visualartsworkersforum.blogspot.com/ or friend us on Facebook.

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