Just back from the opening of Scribble Box at bombhouse in Dublin. Good crowd, big crowd, a fun, original show. I’m reminded of Gemma Tipton’s fourth blog for recirca.com, in which she speculated about the potential of changed economic times to allow artists to experiment more, freed as they might be of the ‘burden’ of selling art. Another clear side-effect though, of the times that are in it, is the remarkable growth in studio and exhibition spaces around Dublin (and presumably around other cities in Ireland as well).
I have heard of numerous new studio / gallery initiatives, of new types of such initiatives, and even of developers chasing artists to rent out office spaces. Could it be that, most unexpectedly, this is suddenly the best time to be an artist in Ireland? Certainly, the landscape has changed for artists just leaving art college – gone may be the years in the wilderness, of hoping eventually to land a corner in a studio somewhere. Art college represents for the student three or four years of sustained practice; if that period can be drawn out indefinitely, what a boon that will be for the making of art in Ireland.