Art News

Ireland at Venice – Minister Catherine Martin announces Irish representation at 60th Venice Art Biennale in 2024 | The Arts Council



The Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts,
Gaeltacht, Sports and Media, Catherine Martin T.D. has announced the selection
of artist, Eimear Walshe, with Sara Greavu and Project Arts Centre as the curator,
to represent Ireland at the 60th Venice Art Biennale in 2024.

The Venice Biennale is one of the most
important international platforms for the visual arts, attracting over half a
million visitors, including global curators, gallerists, art critics, and
artists. The selection of the team to represent Ireland was made following an
open, competitive process, with international jury members. Ireland at Venice is an initiative of
Culture Ireland in partnership with the Arts Council.

Minister Martin, said: “I would like to
congratulate Eimear Walshe, Sara Greavu and Project Arts Centre on being
selected to represent Ireland at the 2024 Venice Art Biennale. Participation at
the Venice Art Biennale increases awareness of Ireland’s strong visual arts
sector and is an important moment in an artist’s career. My Department through
Culture Ireland commissions Ireland at Venice in partnership with the
Arts Council,”

Eimear Walshe’s pavilion for Venice 2024 will
offer a new cultural synthesis that links our contemporary moment to the past,
particularly to gendered and sexual legacies related to the history of land and
housing. Working with a range of deeply talented collaborators, their work
proposes a relationship with land and shelter driven by collective agency and
community. This work will return to Ireland on a national tour, supported by
the Arts Council, in a variety of venues across the island.

The selected artist, Eimear Walshe said: “I’m
very proud to be representing Ireland at Venice this coming April. My practice
is deeply enriched by being embedded in Ireland, in a place, and with people,
so beloved to me. At the same time, my work emerges from the context of a
nation in escalating crisis; this is the subject of my work. With Sara Greavu
as curator, we aim to make a pavilion in tribute to those who persist, against
the odds, in being shelter for each other.”

Curator Sara Greavu said: “The Venice
Biennale offers an incredible opportunity to connect the ideas, practices and
urgencies of contemporary art in Ireland to those of artists, thinkers and
publics internationally. Eimear Walshe’s extraordinary work speaks of and from
a precarious generation, and proposes new ways to claim a sense of kinship,
place and love; refusing estrangement from history and community, language and
tradition. We are so thrilled to work with them for Ireland’s representation in
Venice. The pavilion of Ireland at Venice
will resonate within the larger framework of Adriano Pedrosa’s 60th Venice
Biennale, even as it draws our attention to our own social and material lives,
transforming our understanding of ourselves.”

Notes to editors:

Since 2005, national representation at the Venice Biennale has been a Government initiative led by Culture Ireland in partnership with The Arts Council.  Both partners consider the Venice Biennale to be a remarkable opportunity for artists’ development and for Irish curators to work in an international context. Following their presentation, the Ireland at Venice exhibition will return for a National Irish Tour.   

The Arts Council is excited to be in a position to continue to support the Irish presentation of the Ireland at Venice National Tour, as part of our commitment to the ten-year strategy: ‘Making Great Art Work’ which supports artists to create ambitious, innovative work and to engaging work.  

An open call is issued biennially to invite expressions of interest for the appointment of the Curator and Commissioner of Ireland’s National representation at Venice. The selection of the team to represent Ireland is made following an open, competitive process with international jury members, in partnership with Culture Ireland and The Arts Council.

Ireland was previously represented at the
Venice Biennale by Niamh O’Malley (2022), Eva Rothschild (2019), Jesse Jones
(2017), Sean Lynch (2015), Richard Mosse (2013).

Eimear Walshe (b. 1992, they/them) is an
artist from Longford, currently working in Temple Bar Gallery and Studios,
Dublin. Their work in video, sculpture, publishing and performance traces the
legacies of late 19th century land contestation in Ireland and its relation to
private property, sexual conservatism, and the built environment. They have
recently exhibited with Van Abbemuseum, EVA International, the National
Sculpture Factory, and Temple Bar Gallery and Studios. Their work is in the
collections of the Arts Council and the Irish Museum of Modern Art. They travel
widely across the island screening, reading, producing, and performing their
work.

Sara Greavu (she/her) is the Curator of
Visual Arts at Project Arts Centre, Dublin and a researcher, writer and
organiser. She collaborates with artists, writers, thinkers, activists and
others to make exhibitions, public programmes, publications and events. Recent
projects include Avril Corroon’s GOT DAMP / PÚSCADH ANUAS at Project
Arts Centre; the archive exhibition We realised the power of it, at EVA
International in collaboration with Ciara Phillips and Derry Film and Video
Workshop; and Knowledge is Made Here, an alternative educational project
for young people made in partnership with the artist Andrea Francke.

Founded by artists in 1966, Project Arts
Centre was Ireland’s first arts centre. As Ireland’s foremost centre for the
development and presentation of contemporary arts, Project offers the public
over 600 events annually & reaches an audience of over 50,000 people, as
well as supporting the presentation of work, and national & international
touring, by independent artists. Project works with an ever-widening diversity
of artists across all art forms, exploring ambitious modes of engagement to
make art exciting and accessible to new and existing audiences.

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