Irish Craft Portfolio Exhibition


Jewellery by Rachel McKnight

Note: Apologies for the poor quality of some of the images, I am not sure what I did wrong!

I love craft in its very many incarnations: so, it was as sure as the tide going in and out that I would go to see an exhibition at the RHA (Royal Hibernian Academy), put together by the Craft Council of Ireland, to showcase the work of Ireland’s top makers.


Spectrum Console Table by Fergal O’Leary (Horizon Furniture)

The Craft Council of Ireland (CCoI) is the main promoter of craft in Ireland. The council is a decidedly active body and does Trojan work championing Irish craft across its spectrum, from museum quality spectacular one-off pieces to more production based craft where a maker will make a similar version of an item multiple times.

Irish Craft Portfolio

Ceramics by Jack Doherty

The Portfolio Programme run under the auspices of the CCoI curates the best, of the best, of craft on this island. The selection of a maker for inclusion in the Portfolio Programme, which is updated bi-annually, implies that said maker has a track record of excellence, is on a par with the cream of their international peers, and that their work is high-end and gallery led.


Screen printed cast glass by Alison Lowry

There are about one hundred makers who made the cut for the 2013/ 2014 portfolio and further details about these makers can be found on the website, set up by the CCoI, dedicated to the Portfolio Collection – click here to view the website.


Baskets by Kathleen McCormick

The CCoI selected works by twenty-seven makers who achieved Portfolio Collection status for this year’s Portfolio Exhibition at the RHA. Among the craft disciplines represented in the show are: ceramics, jeweller, basket-weaving, glass, furniture …

craft jewelery

Necklace by Sonja Landweer

There are many stunningly beautiful pieces in the exhibition and all are for sale. Some have already been snapped up but in most cases the makers can produce a similar item if one of the already sold pieces is what you have set your heart on.


Lights by Shane Holland

I didn’t buy anything mainly because I am on a spending moratorium on all things to do with interiors until I decide the best way to revamp and decorate my new house. That said, I was extremely tempted by Kathleen McCormack’s everyday but magical collection of baskets and by Fergal O’Leary’s chic and practical stacking chairs.


Stacking chair by Fergal O’Leary (Horizon Furniture)

Sadly the exhibition is only on for a short time, it opened last Thursday and will close this coming Monday, the 2nd December. If you have an interest in craft it’s so worth visiting: you can see it tomorrow Sunday from 2pm to 5pm or on Monday from 11 to 5pm.

The RHA (Royal Hibernian Academy) is at 15 Ely Place Dublin 2.


Filed under Craft

29 responses to “Irish Craft Portfolio Exhibition

  1. These are stunning! I’m a huge fan of craft, also. I believe I can sense the humanity in hand-made piece; I feel something of the maker’s story, or at least her/his influence.

  2. Great items, I love the lamps and the stacking chairs especially. I love crafts also and artisan goods are so much more beautiful than anything mass produced. I love visiting craft fairs.

    • I really like those stacking chairs, they are so simple and straightforward and also so practical. I too love going to craft fairs to see what different makers have produced and I agree craft and artisan goods trump mass produced items every time, as they are always, as you say, more beautiful. Long live craft!

  3. What a beautiful exhibition. Must have been tough holding on to your moratorium on buying 🙂

    • Thankfully it wasn’t too difficult – I have to keep in mind that my space is so small and that it could easily be overwhelmed by too much stuff. That, said I am still considering buying one of the small baskets. Maybe!

      • Baskets make lovely storage containers and I have seen them attached to a wall to make shelves for light objects. So perhaps you will be able to justify a beautiful small basket as a Christmas present to yourself 🙂

      • I was thinking that one of the small baskets would look nice hung on a wall but I hadn’t thought of using it as a mini-shelf – that’s a good idea. A Christmas present to myself? Maybe. 😉

      • My grandfather used to make baskets. Your post has suddenly brought an image to my mind of little me watching my grandfather at his workbench weaving the canes and of the canes soaking in the tub. Thanks for that memory. It is a sweet one.

      • I am very glad the post brought back a happy image of your grandfather to mind. 😉 😉

  4. What a fantastic and varied range of things!! Marvelous stuff. Great fun.

  5. I can understand why you liked the stacking chairs – they’re both beautiful and unique! Maybe you could get one later… 🙂

  6. Very interesting post as usual, dear B.
    Very nice coverage of the craft fair: I particularly like Jack Doherty’s ceramics and the bauhaus-inspired Shane Holland’s chairs.
    Thank you for giving us such a pleasant tour of the exhibition. 🙂
    All the best,

    • Thank you so much Stefano. The glazes on Jack Doherty’s ceramics are really lovely and my images don’t do them justice.

      I too like the chairs, I was drawn to their simplicity.

      With many good wishes
      B. 😉

  7. What a great exhibition, B.!!! I agree: those chairs are gorgeous. 🙂

  8. I just adore the stacking chairs – must have been so frustrating for you to visit this exhibition!

  9. the stacking chairs are by Fergal O Leary of Horizon Furniture and not Shane Holland. shane did the lamps.
    horizon furniture made the spectrum table, the jack table and the maryjane stacking chairs.
    nice piece though – thanks!

  10. Forest So Green

    What a great craft fair, so many talented artists, I love your photos, Annie

  11. Pingback: Lately … | Just Add Attitude

  12. Hi Aislinn – will do – all the best B

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