Popular with Irish and visitors to Ireland alike, Jam Art Factory is the purveyor of art, made in Ireland by Irish artists and designers, inspired by Ireland and its people.
With two shops in Dublin city, one close to Christchurch and one in Temple Bar, and a thriving online store, Jam Art Factory has become a mainstay in Ireland's capital and the go-to crew for fresh new Irish art and design.
The IrishCentral's Box is proud to feature them as one of the producers in the new subscription box, delivered quarterly bringing Ireland to our global community's door.
Despite 2020's struggles with the COVID-19 pandemic, Jam Art Factory, is thriving and it's fun, vibrant, and quirky Irish designs are spreading around the world.
IrishCentral was delighted to catch up with Jam Art Factory Co-Founder Mark Haybyrne to hear all about the company and how they've pivoted and kept going during the coronavirus outbreak.
How did Jam Art Factory start out?
My brother John and myself set up Jam Art Factory, in 2011, during the last recession as a way to showcase local art and design to Irish and tourists alike. We noticed the huge amount of talent coming out of art colleges and people selling at markets and we wanted to give them a place to sell their work.
I've always had an interest in art and was exhibiting my paintings and John was looking at setting a business up by himself, so we ended up joining forces to open Jam Art Factory in the space of around two or three weeks, when a perfect location in the Iveagh Trust buildings, in the historic Liberties area of Dublin became available. Everything happened quite quickly!
Who's behind Jam Art Factory and how's it continuing to work?
There are currently six people working in the shops throughout the week, which we've been fortunate to be able to keep employed throughout this crazy year. They would normally be greeting customers from Ireland and all over the world but it's changed quite a bit recently due to COVID.
Recently they've just been focusing on the sales coming through the website and trying to get more people onto it.
Our two shops rely on tourists and Irish people to keep them open and to pay rent. Tourists have been non-existent this year and Irish people have been reluctant to come into the city center as they're being advised to work from home. Dublin has been turned into a ghost town which is very sad to see...
We've also been put into stage five lockdown, so we can only work as an online business as non-essential shops have been forced to close. It's incredibly hard to have to shut down at what should be our busiest time of year but it's something that needs to be done to protect those people most vulnerable in our society.
We're just looking forward to a somewhat more positive year next year and putting this year behind us. Onwards and upwards!
What makes Jam Art Factory's art so special?
All of our pieces are made in Ireland by Irish artists and designers.
We mainly sell prints in many techniques - signed/limited edition, giclée, screenprints, lithographs on our site jamartprints.com, but we also sell other bits like Christmas decorations and felted animals, concrete planters, and jewelry.
The prints are our main focus though and they usually are inspired by Ireland and its people and all of our quirks. They are illustrated in bright, bold, and colorful forms.
Maxi's prints of Dublin are extremely popular. He focuses on Dublin places that locals love like pubs, neighborhoods, and iconic buildings.
Pat Byrne's prints are also quite popular. He prints his work directly onto antique book pages that are usually over 100 years old.
We find a lot of our artists through local markets, college [university] end of year shows, and social media.
We're constantly trying to find the next cool up and coming designers.
What makes Jam Art Factory's products quintessentially Irish?
Everything is made and designed by Irish based artist and designers. A lot of pieces that we have will only appeal to you if you're in on the joke or are a local, like the use of some of the slang terms used in our prints and our wooden Christmas decorations - gobshite, craic, langer, Jaysus, Mary and Joseph, and our print - "Feck it sure it's grand".
How can our readers find Jam Art Factory's products?
We've two sites - jamartprints.com selling prints and jamartfactory.com selling jewelry, ceramics, concrete planters, felt animals, and Christmas decorations. Also in both of our Dublin shops in Dublin city center.
You can find Jam Art Factory's shops at 64 Patrick Street, Dublin 8, and 14 Crown Alley, Temple Bar, Dublin 2.
The final order date for The IrishCentral Box this holiday season is Dec 15, 2020.