Lazy, hazy days of summer? Not for Inspiring Ireland!

L-R: Caroline McGee, Inspiring Ireland 1916 Project Creative Lead, visual artist Varvara Shavrova, hsitorian and archivist Catriona Crowe, National Archives of Ireland, and design historian Lisa Godson, National College of Art and Design (NCAD)

It’s been a busy summer for the Inspiring Ireland team with additions to the 1916 online collections, arts festival contributions, and spreading the word about the resource at home and abroad!

We are continuing to upload more of the wonderful personal 1916 stories and objects contributed by members of the public at Collection Days in Dublin, London and New York. You can check out the latest additions to the collections here. The public and private collections in Inspiring Ireland are testament to the role of material objects as communicators of personal and national identities – a topic that was the subject of a discussion panel at the Galway International Arts Festival in July. Held in the beautiful Aula Maxima of the National University of Ireland, an audience of almost one hundred people attended the session chaired by Inspiring Ireland 1916 Project Creative Lead Caroline McGee. Panelists were historian, archivist and DRI advisor Catriona Crowe (National Archives of Ireland), design historian Lisa Godson, (NCAD) and Russian-born visual artist Varvara Shavrova who exhibits in Dublin, Beijing and London. Each brought along fascinating objects that told poignant stories about the treatment of women in society, the communal expression of religion and the amorphous concepts of borders and mirrored identities.

L-R: National Theatre London, Playbill for The Plough and the Stars (July 2016), National Theatre Backstage  mobile app interview with Professor Roy Foster, Carroll Professor of Irish History, Hertford College, Oxford.

July also saw an exciting collaboration between Inspiring Ireland and the National Theatre London that brought 1916 images from the National Library and National Museum Inspiring Ireland collections to the attention of theatergoers attending Sean O’Casey’s The Plough and the Stars at the Lyttelton Theatre. Objects included in the printed playbill included ‘Who Fears to Speak of Easter Week’ and a map of Sackville Street showing the destruction wreaked on its buildings by gunfire, shelling and fire. They accompanied an article by Professor Senia Paseta who also wrote the interpretative essay for Inspiring Ireland’s Women and The Rising exhibition. Images from the Inspiring Ireland Public Memorabilia Collections were also used to accompany a video interview with Professor Roy Foster on the National Theatre’s Backstage mobile app

Coming up IN SEPTEMBER: news of an exciting new collaboration that will bring a new series of Inspiring Ireland collections to global attention - STAY TUNED!