25 Jan 2022

New Engage studio space at Garvey’s Yard will enhance the arts in Longford

Studios at Garvey’s Yard will provide opportunities for artists to live, work and develop their practice in Longford

New Engage studio space at Garvey’s Yard will enhance the arts in Longford

Clare O'Shea, Annette Corkery, Rosie O'Hara, Gary Robinson and Gordon Farrell pictured outside the new Engage studio space in Garvey's Yard. Photo: Shelley Corcoran

Engage has new permanent studio space situated at Garvey’s Yard in Longford town.

Rosie O’Hara, a member of Engage Longford, explained; “The Arts are a well recognised valuable asset in community development and access to the arts enhances lives, landscapes, wellbeing and outlook.

She commented, “Through a series of exhibitions and events at the former Providers shop and involvement in the development and programming of Cruthú Arts Festival, Engage has succeeded in developing a fresh appetite and expanded audience for the Arts, crossing all sectors, both familiar with and new to Arts of all forms.

Also read: Longford artist Gary Robinson to join 'reclusive and eminent' John Kingerlee in special artist talk in Dublin this weekend

“While the gallery element now forms part of the blueprint for the proposed new digital, innovation and creative hub at the site, the absence of artists workspace or studios had become more apparent and is a need which Engage seeks to address with this new Garvey’s Yard development.”

The studios at Garvey’s Yard will provide opportunities for artists to live, work and develop their practice in Longford.

Ip to eight studios will facilitate a broad mix of artists and will be a valuable asset to local arts infrastructure, adding to the growing creative vibrancy of Longford.

The studios will present possibilities for networking and collaborative projects with existing and new communities, local schools and interest groups.

Engage Longford would hope that the studios at Garvey’s Yard will also assist with the regeneration of the site and help to reverse the poor reputation which has blighted the area for some time.

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The project hopes to foster artistic practice while harnessing socially inclusive community action in an integrated approach to urban regeneration.

Studio applications will be evaluated by a panel and studio rental will be offered to those who best meet the criteria, ethos and values of Creative Ireland Longford and Engage whilst offering a broad mix of art practices to the project.

In tandem with the development of Engage, members also established the now annual Cruthú Arts Festival which takes place in July each year. A multidisciplinary event which utilises available vacant shop units as temporary galleries during the festival further developing the profile of visual arts and artists in the town and county.

Engage is currently supported and funded by Longford County Arts office, Creative Ireland Longford, voluntary contributions and local business patrons. Rosie thanked Creative Ireland Longford and LCDC for their financial support and help ensure that the permanent studio space dream became a reality.

For more see the Engage Longford Facebook page.

Also read: Major boost to Longford Shopping Centre plans as Bord Pleanála objection is withdrawn

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