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Public Forum on Amalgamation at IMMA

A public forum on the amalgamation of the Irish Museum of Modern Art, the National Gallery of Ireland and the Crawford Art Gallery in Cork, announced by the Government in 2008, will be held at the Irish Museum of Modern Art on Wednesday 18 November. The event is being organised by IMMA both as a means of exploring further the possible impact of the decision on the Museum and in response to the many queries which IMMA has received on the subject from visitors, artists, collectors and other stakeholders.

The forum aims to provide a cross section of perspectives on the amalgamation, both for and against, from a wide-ranging panel of speakers. In addition to drawing together the various strands of opinion on the issue, it will also make available the experience of international colleagues who have operated within, or been involved in setting up, an amalgamated structure and will give interested parties within Ireland the opportunity to contribute to the debate.

Speakers will include Sune Nordgren, founding Director of the National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Oslo; Michael Houlihan, Director General, National Museum Wales; artists Hughie O’Donoghue and Jaki Irvine; Noel Kelly, Director, Visual Artists Ireland, and gallery/studio directors Jerome Ó Drisceoil and Jacinta Lynch. Visual arts academics, Mike Fitzpatrick and Brian Fay, cultural policy analyst Pat Cooke and leading economist Jim Power will also speak, as will IMMA Chairperson, Eoin McGonigal, and Director, Enrique Juncosa. The forum, which will be chaired by Terry Prone, will end with a series of round table discussions in which all are invited to participate.

Commenting on the Museum’s reasons for organising the event, IMMA Director, Enrique Juncosa, said: “We believe that there is much to be gained from bringing together those who are best placed to offer an informed and engaged opinion on the amalgamation, be they visual arts professionals or members of the gallery-going public; also that their contributions will greatly assist us in mapping out the way ahead, whatever direction that may take.”

Admission to the forum is free, but booking is essential. Bookings can be made online, please select this link, or by email on .
Booking closes on Monday 16 November.

See programme for the forum below.

For further information and images please contact Monica Cullinane or Patrice Molloy at Tel: +353 1 612 9900; Email:

6 October 2009


Date: Wednesday 18 November 2009

Venue: IMMA, Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin 8

9.30      Participants arrive. Tea/coffee available

10.00    Chair, Terry Prone welcoming address

10.05    Eoin McGonigal , Chairperson, IMMA
10.15    Two international directors speak of their personal experience of operating within/setting up an amalgamated structure
             Michael Houlihan, Director General, National Museum Wales

             Sune Nordgren, Founding Director of the National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Oslo, currently Project Manager at the Kivik Art Centre and the Museum Vandalorum in Sweden

11.00    Noel Kelly , Director, Visual Artists Ireland
             Jacinta Lynch, Director, Broadstone Studios                         
             Patrick T Murphy , Director, Royal Hibernian Academy  
11.30    Tea/coffee

11.50     Jim Power, economist
              Pat Cooke, Director, School of Art History and Cultural Policy, University College Dublin

12.20    Mike Fitzpatrick , Head of School, Limerick School of Art and Design.
             Brian Fay, artist, lecturer and member of IMMA’s Artists’ Panel

12.40    Lunch (including time for media interviews)

13.45     Anthony Cronin, writer and Saoi of Aosdána

13.55     Hughie O’Donoghue, artist           
              Jaki Irvine, artist
               Jerome Ó Drisceoil, Director, Green on Red Gallery

14.25      Enrique Juncosa, Director, IMMA

14.40     Tea/coffee

15.00     Round table discussions (or general open questions and answers)

15.30     Feedback from round tables

16.00     Chair draws forum to a close, with summary of conclusions


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