Culture Night - 18 September | NDCG Online, Outdoor + Self-directed Activities

Culture Night - 18 September | NDCG Online, Outdoor + Self-directed Activities

Join us for unique Cultural Night festival of exploration and curiousity! Check out our range of fun self-directed activities for all ages both online and in person. We provide the craft materials and self-directed family activities - just bring along your picnic blankets, cushions & imagination!!

Our self-directed activities will take place in the grounds of Kilkenny Castle + Castle Yard. Inspired by the work of Fiona Mulholland, we will have safe socially distanced lawn markings for small groups of families & friends, to gather and enjoy a day of exploration and creativity.

Our Culture Night activities are inspired by Connected Sculpture Trail - follow the trail through the city by foot or enjoy the Connected Virtual Tour from home!

Also check out our Generation exhibition virtual experiences, interesting maker interviews, and #GetIrelandMaking craft inspirations for adults & families.

This year we have partnered with the Kilkenny Arts Office and Office of Public Works to deliver our Culture Night programme.


WHATS ON??                                                                                                                                                                                            

Self-directed Activities

Senses Trail
Connect with your surroundings. Our Senses Trail invites you to explore and connect with nature through sound, smell and touch. We get lots of information about the world around us through our senses. Take time to explore and connect with nature with together - through these small and easy activities. Grab a Blindfold or simply close your eyes • A few sheets of paper • pencil • crayons.  Download here

Connected Kilkenny Sculptural Trail with Drawing Activity & Quiz
Take a creative adventure... explore the Kilkenny sculpture trail throughout the city while 'Connecting' with the pieces by drawing, guessing, imagining and recording the sculptures on the trail!  Re-discover our city through fresh eyes! Download here

Record Your Own Soundscape
Identify the characteristics of your location through sound. Our soundscape activity sheet encourages you to stop for a moment, listen, and immerse yourself in the acoustic environment. We have included a range of suggested approaches to record your soundscapes, be them urban, rural, natural or human-centred. Submit your soundscape recording to and we will upload to our culture night webpage. Download here

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Weave a Star - One Million Stars Project
One Million Stars’ at the Medieval Mile Museum is a project from the Amber Women’s Refuge to raise awareness of domestic violence, and the first of its kind in Ireland. You can contribute to the 1 million goal by weaving your own star!  Call in to Medieval Mile Museum on 18 September to join the workshop, or check out star weaving instructions here or online video tutorials. Drop your stars into Medieval Mile Museum of National Design & Craft Gallery!

Narrative Tools Project                                                                                                                                                                                                            We are collecting stories and photographs of tools / craft items that have been handed down....We invite you to send a photograph of a treasured handed-down tool or inherited hand-made item and tell us why it is important to you. Email your submission to or post to: Narrative Tools project, National Design & Craft Gallery, Castle Yard, Kilkenny. Include your name, photograph(s) and brief image description. Penned narratives are also welcome (120 words max). Please photograph / scan items on a plain white background at a high quality. To celebrate craft connections, content submitted will be shared on and NDCG’s Facebook and Instagram platforms (@NDCGallery). Narrative Tools is an online / postal intergenerational project hosted by National Design & Craft Gallery (NDCG) with visual artist Caroline Schofield.

Generation Exhibition
National Design & Craft Gallery, Castle Yard
Open to visitors from 11am – 8.30pm with tours on the hour from 4pm-8pm. Book here
Generation invites us to consider the unique perspective of a group of designer-makers who are custodians of a familial tradition of making and creativity, continuing and/or reinventing the work begun by previous generations of their family. The exhibition will be open late for Culture Night. If you can't visit us, check out content on, including Virtual Visits with curators Frances McDonald and Muireann Charleton, makers interviews and family activities section. Digital Library brings together videos, podcasts and articles on the Generation makers and their stories. You are welcome to engage with our new process videos by makers, as part a new initiative Get Ireland Making, led by Design & Crafts Council Ireland, supported by Creative Ireland and Healthy Ireland, which aims to share the skills of our talented craftspeople with communities across Ireland. Silversmith Cara Murphy demonstrates basse-taille enamelling technique, while Hugo Byrne records the process of crafting a knife and Mark Campden applys lustre glazes.

Connected Sculpture Trail
Discover Kilkenny's attractions and historic sites with the Connected Kilkenny Sculpture Trail. Explore the 30 works by artist, sculptors and crafts people across 20 locations along the city's Medieval Mile. Locations include Butler House gardens, the Castle Yard behind the Kilkenny Design Centre, Kilkenny Castle Park and Rose Gardens, Pembroke Hotel, Hibernian Hotel, Ormonde Hotel, Medieval Mile Museum, Market Cross Shopping Centree, Rothe House Museum & Garden , Butler Gallery, MacDonagh Junction Shopping Centre Centre and Rivercourt Hotel Kilkenny.
Dowload the Trail brochure and find out more. Click here

Outdoor Workshops:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Liz’s Mobile Discovery Studio
Friday 18 September 10am – 1pm & 2pm - 5pm
Join multi-disciplinary artist Liz Nilsson for process led site specific activities that investigate connections between, sense of place and belonging. Meeting place will be outside the Parade Tower at Kilkenny Castle. Participants are asked to bring along a notebook and sitting matt. Please wear comfortable outdoor clothing – art supplies included. This outdoor activity will be weather dependant, it is possible that we may need to use the Parade Tower Venue as an alternative on the day. Places are limited to 10 participants per workshop. Suitable for Adults 18+. To register click here
Location: Kilkenny Castle Grounds & along the canal walk

Craft Hunt in The Rose Garden
Friday 18 September 4pm - 5pm
Join us at the castle park for a wonderful fun filled self-directed craft hunt created by visual artist & master of paper cutting, Paul Bokslag. To receive your Craft Hunt Map, pop over to our oudoor Culture Night welcome stand, located outside the Parade Tower. Suitable for the whole family!
Location: Kilkenny Castle Grounds
Map will be available for download shortly here

Live Online Workshops:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Paper Blossoms Workshop - Free
Friday 18 September 4pm
Join Design & Craft Council Ireland Education Panel Member Sheila Jordan, for a live online workshop inspired by Connected exhibitor Michelle Maher’s Flower Sculptures. Children will learn how to make unique 3d paper flowers. Suitable for ages 6+. Duration 40 minutes. To register click here

Gestural Papercuts with Paul Bokslag
Friday 18 September 5pm
Visual artist and designer Paul Bokslag will guide participants in the process of working freehand to create intuitive gestural papercuts, exploring movement & form. Suitable for Teens & Adults. Duration 40 minutes. To register click here

Connected Virtual Tour