This €18 million development is sadly one of the few remarkable buildings to emerge from the glory days of the Celtic Tiger. Carlow’s VISUAL Centre for Contemporary Art & The George Bernard Shaw Theatre is a multi-disciplinary arts facility designed by renowned British architect - Terry Pawson.
Pawson won the open international competition held by the RIAI in 2004, for which there were over 100 expressions of interest. VISUAL boasts an area of 3,130m², comprising four principle gallery spaces, a 300 seat performing arts theatre, a restaurant, bar and spaces for a craft and a book shop. It’s rather lovely so if you’re ever in the area be sure to swing by for a nosey.
Unique to Ireland, the building features an expansive gallery space with a ceiling height of 12m to accommodate large-scale sculpture and installation, the scale of which has (supposedly) not been easily accommodated in Ireland to date.
Pawson describes the building eloquently as “an assembly of different sized volumes clad in opaque glass raised on a concrete plinth….The muteness of the opaque glass harmonises with the neutral grey of the town’s local limestone. “
We can attest to this wonderful soft light, which alters over the course of the day and projects a more exuberant glow come nightfall. The ‘white box’ gallery spaces are linked by a landscape of exposed concrete. Wall surfaces have been cast against a textured board which at this time support an exhibition of more than 100 pieces that illustrate the breadth and longevity of celebrated architect, designer and artist - Patrick Scott.
The robust industrial quality of the Visual coupled with the works displayed in ‘Image Space Light’ lent itself perfectly as the backdrop to our first summer shoot of 2014. We chose an understated palette of pale blues, navy and white. Culottes have been and remain firmly on our radar as the perfect middle-ground for smart summer dressing.
Thank you kindly to the Visual, to Arnotts for supplying the beautiful clothes for this shoot and to Coldlilies for the wonderful jewellery. Items listed are available from Arnotts Department Store at 12 Henry Street, Dublin 1.
All styling and photography is our own.
Tambi Blouse by Goat
Culottes by Lennon Courtney
Doris Day Knit by Lennon Courtney
Orla Kiely dress
Jessika Oversized Dress by D.Efect
Sliders by Schuh
Shirt Dress by Lennon Courtney
White Blazer by Tara Jarmon
Navy Culottes by Tara Jarmon
Sliders (as before)