€6m Announced for Local Authorities to Develop Artist Workspaces Nationwide

Minister Martin announced the pilot Artist Workspaces Scheme in Artane Place with choreographer Ella Clarke (Photo: Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media)

€6m Announced for Local Authorities to Develop Artist Workspaces Nationwide

Grants between €150k and €300k available.

Minister for the Arts Catherine Martin has this week announced a new fund aimed at increasing artist workspaces across the country. The pilot Artist Workspaces Scheme is worth a total of €6 million and is targeted at local authorities, which can apply for grants of up to €300,000. 

Much of our cultural infrastructure is initiated by our local authorities and they have been a crucial resource in the delivery of arts and culture interventions over many decades, said Minister Martin.

Eligible costs that can be covered by the grants include the refurbishment of existing facilities to provide additional capacity for artists; lighting and sound equipment; heating and plumbing works; seating, staging, soundproofing and storage; health and safety works; mechanical and electrical works; painting and decorating; and digital equipment. 

Local authorities that are in densely populated areas can apply for grants up to €300,000. These areas include Cork City Council, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, Fingal County Council, Galway City Council, Limerick City and County Council, Louth County Council, South Dublin County Council, and Waterford City and County Council. Grants of up to €150,000 are available to the remaining local authorities. Successful applicants will be provided with 60% of the costs.

The fund follows the department’s Space to Create scheme from 2023, which allocated €3 million in funding for artists’ spaces in Dublin. 

The pilot Artist Workspaces Scheme is currently open for applications from local authorities and will be assessed on a rolling basis. 

Commenting on the scheme, Minister Martin added:

As Minister for the Arts, I have been acutely aware of the pressures that artists and creatives, including those in the electronic music sector, have faced in finding suitable workspaces and that is why I made a commitment to provide capital funding towards the provision of artist workspaces.

Coilín O’Reilly, Chief Executive of Carlow County Council, added: 

The ‘Artist Workspaces Scheme’ is a welcome addition to the toolbox Local Authorities can use to address the issues of vacancy and dereliction, as well as adding vibrancy, activation and colour to our towns and villages. With 40% matched funding from Local Authorities, this scheme represents a partnership that can transform the arts at a local level. 

For further information on the pilot Artist Workspaces Scheme, visit www.gov.ie.

In other news, a major conservation project by the Irish Heritage Trust and Poetry Ireland has commenced this week at No. 11 Parnell Square East in Dublin. The Georgian building will become a cultural centre dedicated to sharing Irish poetry, heritage and culture with the public. The conservation project, worth €5.2 million, was funded through the Project Ireland 2040 Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF) and is scheduled to be completed by summer 2025. Visit https://irishheritagetrust.ie.

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Published on 12 June 2024

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