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Cork City Council launches Cork City Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018-2022

Culture and Creative Strategy 2018-2022


An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar TD., was joined by Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan TD., and Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy TD., on Wednesday 12th September 2018 for the launch of Cork City Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018 - 2022, as part of the all-of-government Creative Ireland Programme.  

This ambitious and innovative 5-year Culture and Creativity Strategy has been developed by the Cork City Council Culture Team and local Creative Ireland Programme coordinator, in consultation with local artists, creatives, cultural and heritage organisations, community groups, the creative industries, centres of education and schools. The Strategy aims to provide meaningful opportunities for citizens and local communities, together with our Local Authorities, to nurture, sustain and facilitate participation in cultural and creative activities.

The launch, which took place at the Irish Architectural Archive in Merrion Square, included a performance by acclaimed poet Stephen James Smith of a specially commissioned poem on the transformative power of creativity within local communities. Stephen was the first Spoken Word writer-in-residence for young people at the Dunamaise Arts Centre in November 2017, supported by Laois Arts Office as part of their local Creative Ireland Programme.

Speaking at today’s event, An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar TD, said: “Creative Ireland is all about improving access to culture and creativity in every county nationwide, to improve public wellbeing. The Culture Teams in each local authority have been absolutely essential to fulfilling this aim. We believed that by bringing people across a range of disciplines together in our Local Authorities, we could achieve more than the sum of their individual efforts. The plans being published today are proof that these collective efforts are resulting in projects of real scale and ambition. 

“Through Creative Ireland we are prioritising and promoting arts and culture at a local, national and international level because an active and engaging cultural sector can enrich every aspect of our society and every stage of our lives. Through these Culture and Creative Strategies, we hope more and more people will become involved in artistic and cultural pursuits in their own local area, with all of the vitally important social, and indeed economic, consequences that follow.” 

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan TD., said: “I would like to sincerely thank the local Creative Ireland co-ordinators, the CEO’s, Directors of Services and all the Culture Teams in our Local Authorities who have been working so hard in recent months to help us realise some of the key ambitions in the Creative Ireland programme.

I believe that as communities across the country undergo significant change, we are beginning to recognise that how a community understands itself, celebrates itself and expresses itself are major contributing factors in its ability to withstand economic, political, and cultural winds of change and transition. Arts, culture, heritage and in particular creativity are now being viewed, not only as amenities to improve the quality of life, but as a foundation upon which the future of our communities rests. Arts and creative activities can profoundly affect the ability of a community not only to survive over time, but to thrive.”

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Authority Eoghan Murphy TD., said: “Our Local Authorities are the primary instruments of community engagement and activation. By investing in our communities, through the Creative Ireland Programme, my Department is empowering each Local Authority to do what they do best - to deliver appropriate, citizen focused and engaging programmes.

For any place to be truly successful as a community, people must feel not only that they belong, but also that they can actively take part in the creation, management and continued success of that place. The Creative Ireland Programme, with joint investment from both my and Minister Madigan’s Department are together, empowering you to collaborate, to make, to visit, to take part in wide and varied creative and innovative processes that are vital today and in the future.”

Some of the special initiatives prioritised as part of Cork City Council Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018 - 2022 include:

  • Tools of the Trade: An art project that aims to connect school children with interesting work places and art institutions that are in their immediate environment. In the 2018 project, the children explored the connection that exists between the creative and inquisitive processes of both science and art due to the unique work places that they were exposed to.
  • Rebel Streets: A collaborative project exploring the history and heritage of the area, involving intergenerational work to research and develop stories from the area, using street art and reverse graffiti to explore these stories. A new Street Art festival took place on Grand Parade as part of this project. There were giant art works, demonstrations, Rap/Hip Hop performances, kids stencil workshops in the City Library, and talks from participating artists RASK, STEVIE G, BETA of ZAP GRAFFITI ARTS. This is a partnership project with Cork City Council Arts Office, Archives, Libraries, RAPID and Cork Community Artlink.

Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. Mick Finn said: “Cork City is proud of its status as a City of Culture and of the way it presents a public cultural face to the world.  This strategy will help deepen Cork City Council’s engagement with both the creative sector and our communities as the Cork City Culture Team continues its work.”

Ann Doherty, CEO of Cork City Council said: “Cork City Council is looking forward to working in partnership with the various community, cultural and heritage organisations, local artists, schools and creative industries to ensure that innovative, vibrant and creative practices are taken to all of our citizens to enrich their lives”.

Full details of the Cork City Council Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018 – 2022 can be found at or on the link below. 

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