30 July - 26 October
view gallery


Connected30 July - 26 October

Trail Map - click through to view on Google Maps


We live in an age in which it is easy to feel disconnected. The uncertainty and confinement of recent months has made many of us feel more isolated. Others have felt a strong need to ground themselves, to spend time in nature, to grow, bake or make. It is often in these simple ways that we reconnect with the natural world and what matters most. While individually we stand two meters apart, we are far from alone; each of us is a family member, a friend, a neighbour. We have begun to realise that we are part of a complex web of people across the globe - each vulnerable to illness or catastrophe. We also hold responsibility, to ensure what we do will not negatively impact others. While individual, we are not separate.

small spaces of silence in between borrowed breaths arms tighten at the whisper of a name – Eileen Carney Hulme ‘Belonging’

Connection is possibly the deepest need of human beings. For most of our evolutionary history, humans lived very differently than we do now. People lived collectively within a community; it was uncommon to live alone. People hunted, foraged, or grew most of their food, giving them an understanding of natural cycles. These closer relationships weren’t perfect, but people had a sense of interdependence, community, and belonging.

As we emerge from our homes into a changed world, this project celebrates our collective solidarity, connectivity, resilience and creativity. CONNECTED reminds us of the importance and fragility of our human connections, with family, friends and wider global society. It also reflects on our deep interconnection with the natural world which each generation holds in trust for the next.

Designed as an external exhibition CONNECTED allows audiences to re-connect with culture and craft, outside of a museum setting. Recognised as the home of craft and design in Ireland, this new sculpture trail opens up heritage gardens at the heart of Kilkenny city, and encourages us to rediscover our city through fresh eyes. Beginning from the courtyard of Castle Yard and lush Butler House Gardens, the exhibition trail leads you through the cities key cultural and historic sites from Kilkenny Castle Park to Medieval Mile, Butler Gallery at Evan's Home to Rothe House. The exhibition will be accompanied by self-directed workshops and activities for all ages.


A.   Castle Yard:
Rachel Doolin,The Fragility of Things
Rachel Joint, Fathom + Whisper i + ii
Saidhbhín Gibson, 40 Assorted Dressings for the Prickly Pear
Martha Quinn, Bud, With Every Breath
Fiona Mulholland, Square Meter of Personal Space

B.   Butler Gardens:
James Horan, Lady on Pedestal #3 + #4, Kilkenny limestone - Gentleman on Pedestal #1, Underwater Pose
Gabrielle Sampson, Fungi Internet of the Forest

C.   Kilkenny Castle Gardens:
Michelle Maher, ceramic - Seeing Red
Alan Meredith, pavilion - The Fold
Ann Mulrooney, bronze - Monument to Missing Persons
Michael Warren, steel - Anchored Void

D.   The Parade + across Kilkenny:
Audrey Dowling, Poetry illustrations Commissioned by Kilkenny Arts Office

E.   Pembroke Hotel Courtyard:
James Horan, Game Over, Generation Alpha (Drone), War Machine (with tank), After-Thought

F.   Hibernian Hotel
Open Circle, Collaborative project with Paul Bokslag

G.   Ormonde Hotel
Michelle Maher, The Folded Line

H.   Medieval Mile:
Stephen Burke, Italian Salad, Water
Jane Murtagh, Spring Notations
Amber, Collaborative project One Million Stars to End Violence

I.   Tholsel
Fiona Mulholland, Are We There Yet?

J.   Market Cross:
Laura Quinn, Collaborative project -                       Words of Isolation | Words of Connection

K.   Rothe House:
Liz Nilsson, Ladys Bedstraw
Rajinder Jit Singh, Un-Migrant-ing

L.    Dean Street:
Saturio Alonso, Cainneach

M.   Courthouse:
Caroline Schofield, 800 Layers

N.   Batemans Quay:
Vanessa Power, We’ve Got This.        Commissioned by Kilkenny Arts Office

O.   Peacepark Greensbridge
Brian King, Arch + Dial (X + O) Presented by The Arts Council on winning 1985 Tidy Towns

P.   Butler Gallery:
Janet Mullarney, Byzantine
Alan Counihan, FLIGHT (No.2)
Ani Mollereau, Hare

Q     Workhouse Square, MacDonagh Junction
Paul Bokslag, Rise + Set

R.   Rivercourt Hotel Terrace:
Alan Meredith, oak - Cleft

Education & Outreach

Words of Isolation | Words of Connection Ongoing

This is an ongoing collaborative artwork conceived by Connected exhibitor Laura Quinn, Irish designer & glassblower . As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Laura issued an open invitation to people across the world to submit words that help to inspire and connect us at a time of isolation. For more information about this project and how to get involved click here

Heritage Week Webinar: Tools Of The Trade Fr 21 August, 2020

Join Emma Bourke member of the Glass Society of Ireland, Niall MacCoitir, author of the Myths, Legends & Folklore series & Mary Pyke Head Gardner at Rothe House Kilkenny, as they explore the theme 'Heritage On Your Doorstep'. Audience members will gain an enjoyable insight into the cultural aspects of Irelands flora, as seen through the eyes of craftsperson, author and gardener.

Culture Night Programme 2020 Fri 18 Sept

Join us for unique Cultural Night festival of self-directed workshops and activities for all ages both online and in person. We will provide the craft materials and self-directed family fun activities for all ages. Places will be limited in line with Government Guidelines. The main outdoor location for our self-directed activities will take place on the grounds of Kilkenny Castle. See below for a selection of our live offering.

Read more

Halloween Window Display Worksheet Friday 23 October 2020 at 11.22 am

Experiment with silhouettes to create a Halloween themed window display which can be set up in school or at home. Suitable from age 6+, adult supervision required. Download here

Spooky Halloween Shadow Box Theatre Friday 23 October 2020 at 11.58 am

Create your own spooky Halloween shadow box theatre inspired by your favorite book. In this worksheet, you will learn how to transform a cardboard box & recycled materials to create inventive characters & theatrical scenes for your show. Suitable for ages 6+ with adult supervision. Download Shadow Box Theatre (pdf)