There’s a lot more to living in Ireland than downing Guinness and Jameson; fantastic art and culture is all around us, and Culture Night provides us with an opportunity to experience the best of Irish culture without burning a hole in our pockets. Culture Night is an all-Ireland public event, held this year on September 20, in which artists, actors, historians, writers, performers and musicians all come together to celebrate various art forms.
The scale of Culture Night has snowballed rapidly, from being staged only in Dublin to spreading out across the country, with around 400,000 people visiting studios, galleries, museums, bars and exhibitions last year. This year, the theme is “Wrap up in Culture” — something which will inevitably be reflected in the experience of Culture Night attendees.
While Culture Night features vibrant musical and dance performances, some of its most exciting events are spooky historical tours like Dublin Ghost Signs, which reveals little-known and terrifying stories from across the city, and will have you hugging your pillow tightly with fear when you go to bed afterwards.
Likewise, New Voices of Ireland at the Centre of Creative Practices will showcase a variety of urban art forms by 10 intercultural artists at an exhibition entitled Cultural Memory – Transition, Temporality, Transcultures. This exhibition explores how the cultural memories of newcomers to Irish cities are transformed, combining pre-existing memories with current experiences to form something new. Follow-up talks and workshops will also be held.
If none of these events tickle your fancy, you can instead watch a film at an outdoor cinema, attend the city’s Flea Night Market or examine some great works by asylum seeker and refugee artists. For any budding artists printing your own organic tote bag to fill up with all the goodies you will inevitably collect over the course of the night will also be an enjoyable experience.
There are also bicycle, bus, walking and cart tours that will give you plenty of different angles to view the city from. It is worth staying out late, because as it begins to get dark the street lamps will cast the city in a new light, and the streets will be full of music and people enjoying food and drinks.
Any late-night adventurers should head to West Wood Gym on the Clontarf Road from 7:30pm to 10pm to learn about Irish literature, and specifically the writer Bram Stoker. Don’t forget to bring along a hot flask of tea!
The ticket prices for every single Culture Night event is something that you are also going to adore, because everything is free entrance. Visit Culture Night’s official website to learn more!