Limerick Arts Office has announced details of Ireland's first subsidised living space scheme for artists.
An open call has been made to recognised cultural practitioners, including contemporary visual artists, performers, musicians and writers, to apply for the use of 6 newly-refurbished residential apartments at John’s Square.
The Square reopened to the public earlier this year following a €1.5 million redevelopment by Limerick City Council and John’s Square can now be considered Limerick’s Living Cultural Quarter.
Arts Officer Sheila Deegan said the scheme forms part of Limerick City Council’s strategy to further enhance and develop the steady growth in cultural infrastructure in Limerick that in turn helps to support the local cultural economy.
“Potential residents include recent graduates who are contributing to the arts in the region through projects and activities associated with the Creative Limerick spaces and the possibility of attracting mid-career artists back to Limerick for a time, by offering this residential support. The apartments provide the soft infrastructure created by a community, with the informal sharing of expertise and experiences. The initiative also provides a further infrastructural support for Limerick National City of Culture 2014.”
Ms. Deegan continued: “The presence of The Artists’ Apartments in the heart of the City, where artists can live, will help to keep and attract artists living and working in Limerick City. The apartments, which are licensed for a period of between one year and three years, provide subsidised living spaces in recognition that artists and many individuals working in the arts are on modest income levels.”
Ms. Deegan noted that the apartments are situated in the heart of a burgeoning living cultural and arts quarter in Limerick, which also includes Dance Limerick, a new resource in the former Daghdha premises, for the promotion of dance in Limerick and its surrounds. Operating from the ground floor and basement of 1 & 2 John's Square, with a beautiful performance space in St. John of the Cross Church, Dance Limerick aims to provide opportunities for dance artists to develop and perform new work alongside an engaging programme of performances, talks and projects for the wider public.
John’s Square has a rich history as Limerick’s oldest public space and is a gateway to the centre of the City. The new pedestrian-friendly space provides the venue for performances and events, as well as an attractive amenity in which to meet, stroll, browse and enjoy the City. It now forms an appropriate setting for the fine historical buildings which surround John’s Square, including St John’s Cathedral, St John’s Hospital and the limestone townhouses. These investments in the City revitalise the area, build upon an already dynamic heritage of arts activity and stimulate further development opportunities. This cluster of cultural facilities forms a vibrant cultural heart for the city.
The Residential Artists’ Apartments Scheme is supported by Limerick City Council, the Department of Arts, Heritage, the Gaeltacht Access II Scheme and the Arts Council.
The refurbishment of the residential Artists’ Apartments, 1-2 John’s Square took place under co-funding by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Access II scheme under the National Development Plan 2007-2013 and Limerick City Council.
Details relating to the Scheme, as well as eligibility and selection criteria are available from www.limerickcity.ie. Applications must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more contact the Limerick City Arts Office at Phone: (061) 407421, 407363.