Contact Studios find a new temporary home for artists

Contact Studios

Pictured at an exhibition current member of Contact Studios and Project Manager of Project Motive Kevin O’Keeffe with Curator of Project Motive Stephen Murphy. Picture: Jordan Mac Cormaic/ilovelimerick

Contact Studios find a new temporary home for artists

By ilovelimerick correspondent Frances Watkins

Contact Studios are currently working from their premises in Limerick City Building at Bank Place which also houses a training space for unemployed tradesmen. They were given this space following lobbying from Councillor Michael Sheahan and Senator Kieran O’Donnell.

Founded in 1997, Contact Studios is an artist-run studio space, formerly on the grounds of St. Joseph’s Hospital, Mulgrave Street, Limerick and is temporarily housed at present within the Limerick City Building at Bank Place in the city centre.

For over 20 years, Contact Studios has provided a creative environment and work space for over 50 artists. They currently have 12 members. The Studios were founded by members of the Real Art Project (RAP) and the Mid-West Health Board (now H.S.E.), with the intention of providing spaces for graduates of Limerick School of Art and Design.

Until October 2016, members gave recreational art classes at Le Chéile, a local Mental Health support group operating a drop-in centre where they promote health and wellbeing through social, recreational and educational activities. These classes constituted the collective payment in kind for our studios at St. Joseph’s. In 2001, a new contract was redrawn with the H.S.E., which was the blueprint for our agreement until October 2016.

Members collectively gave 520 hrs per year to recreational art and craft classes and social drop-in events. They pride themselves on having excellent working relationships, based on good communication, and mutual understanding, with the organisations and clients they work with.

They are currently seeking new mutually beneficial partnerships to suit their operating model and ethos. Past studio members have advanced to many areas including arts administration, educational positions and have exhibited widely both in Ireland and abroad.

They have provided a platform for many to pursue further study to PhD and Masters level. Contact Studios are currently involved in a collective effort with Limerick City and County Council to establish permanent and sustainable studio premises in Limerick city.

For more on Contact Studios click here

For more on art in Limerick click here

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