Meaningful | Encounters

Cultural Programme 2020 

126 will celebrate its 15th birthday with the 2020 cultural programme. 126 aim to mark the momentous occasion by undertaking one of the gallery’s most ambitious series of exhibitions in scale, connectivity and concept to date. Titled “Meaningful | Encounters”, the project focuses on working with artists to develop shows which address multiple aspects of contemporary life and engage with deeply meaningful issues which affect us now. The goal is to connect audiences with important themes and issues, collaborations of value, and engaging events, while working with both emerging and established artists to include a range of voices. One exhibition examines cross-border politics with Northern Ireland a year after Brexit (update*- during Brexit negociations). In another, the artists discuss contemporary material and social relationships to animals as we enter discussions surrounding carbon emissions from the dairy industry and the increased calls to reduce our meat-eating habits. We will look at what it means to be Human now and ideas of conservation, as well as create conversations around consumerism and tourism, all while scrutinizing the world as it is and not as we wish it.


The Project “Meaningful | Encounters” has two strands, the first being ‘meaningful’, which focuses on exhibitions and cultural programmes and supports meaningful research and deliberation of topics relevant now in our socio-political landscape. The second is ‘encounters’ which looks at how people encounter 126 and its exhibitions. Ideas of display and installation that challenge the notion of the white-cube gallery space will come into play. We will also consider how art works in the public realm increase our engagement with our audiences, in addition to artist talks and residencies. The focus will be on collaborations with artists, local and national organisations and groups, or on ideas based on local folklore, connections and heritage. Curated by Simon Fennessy Corcoran.


• Intern Exhibition, January 10th – 26th, Artist to be announced.
• Caol Áit, Emerging Irish Artist Residency Award Exhibition with The Burren College of Art, 2019 recipients, Tara Carroll, Laura Ní Fhlaibhín, Siobhán O’Callaghan, Blaine O’Donnell. Preview January 31st, runs Feb 1st – 16th
• The Future is Clean and Round by Rosa Makela & Elva Mulchrone, Preview Feb 28th, Runs Feb 29th – March 15th.
• Duo exhibition with Meadhbh O’Connor & Anna McLeod, Preview March 20th, runs March 21st – April 12th
• Cellissimo, curated by Rob D’Eath as part of Music for Galway 2020, Preview April17th, runs April 18th – May 3rd
• 126 Annual Members Exhibition, curated by Ciara Scanlon, Mart, Dublin. Artists to be announced. Preview May 8th, runs May 9th – 24th
• Solo Exhibition by Ursula Burke, Preview June 12th, runs June 14th – 28th
• Reliquary of Beasts, Galway International Arts Festival, Curated by Simon Fennessy Corcoran. Artists Christie Brown (UK), Rose Robson (UK), Jo Kimmins (ROI) & Sarah Lundy (ROI). Preview 13th of July, Runs until July 26th
• Human, Laura O’Connor, Bassam Al-Sabah & Barbara Knezevic, Preview Aug 7th, runs Aug 8th – 23rd
• Paradigm Shift, Exhibition of Contemporary Figurative painting curated by Tom Mclean, Artists To be confirmed. Preview Sep 4th, runs Sep 5th – 20th
• Backwater Artists Group collaboration exhibition, 126 member artists David Dunne & Lorraine Cleary, BAG Artists, Ailbhe Ni Bhrian & Ben Reilly. Preview October 9th, runs Oct until 25th October.
• Tulca 2020, 30th October – 15th November. Details to follow.
• 126 Affordable Art Christmas Market Fundraiser, December 2020

Performance Artists in Residence
• Ceara Conway
• Maia Nunes

Additional Programming
• Circuit 2020, in collaboration with Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture
• 126 Public Artwork Commission
• Artist Talks Throughout the year
• Creative Café, Professional Development and Social Events
• Drink & Draw, Fundraiser Events
• Two Can Do Performance with Bianca Paige Smith
• Supermarket Art Fair, Stockholm with Eleanor McCaughey

• Centre for Creative Arts & Multimedia, Graduate Residency
• Two Artist Residency Exchange with Rijeka, with exhibition in Croatia.

And more exciting opportunities and programmes are in the works!