The Ilen boat’s North Atlantic Journey, Open House Junior and visits to some of Limerick’s most striking homes and buildings among the highlights. Why not uncover some of Limerick’s architectural treasures or visit some of our more unusual homes and buildings as part of this year’s OpenHouse Limerick?
The 2019 OpenHouse Limerick festival returns for its 8th year between Thursday 17 to Sunday 20 October, with over 40 buildings and events ready for you to explore including:
- Visits to the power station in Ardnacrusha
- Treasure Hunt around Limerick
- Presentation on the Ilen Project’s trip to Greenland
- The Other Georgian Limerick tour
This year’s theme is Architecture is Visionary which will inspire, enthuse, provoke and entertain. The concept will not only display Limerick’s architectural talent but also engage with the public to discuss how architects and communities can work together to address visionary change.
This is at a time when Limerick is embracing an open-minded approach to design, urban planning and construction techniques, strengthening its attractiveness and variety.
Visionary is fundamental to how people experience their environment, and Limerick city and county is a great example of this as it is a rich source of visionary buildings and spaces old and new. This year’s festival will celebrate these creations through guided building tours, public talks, discussions, short films, public exhibitions, walking tours and family workshops based around five key themes.
The festival, organised by a voluntary committee, is presented by architects, designers, academics, artists and many others for the general public to enjoy, all for free.
OpenHouse Limerick has a simple mission: to provide access into buildings that are normally closed for the general public. In addition to building tours, visitors to OpenHouse Limerick can also attend some of the free evening events and talks for a different view into architecture. Interest in this idea is growing annually, with OpenHouse Limerick enjoying growing numbers and a more diverse audience annually.
OpenHouse Limerick is also delighted to announce that RIAI CPD Structured Points are available for attending any of our 2019 festival events.
Maria Donoghue, Chair of Open House Limerick said: “The committee is delighted to welcome all members of the public to this extensive Festival of Architecture in Limerick in October, all free of charge. Our ‘Visionary’ theme has inspired hundreds of participants - from small architecture practices to major cultural institutions - to create a fantastic and varied programme. There really is something for everyone!”
“OpenHouse Limerick not only demonstrates Limerick’s architectural talent and opens up buildings for all to visit, but also presents how architects and communities can work together to address change. An open and visionary approach is fundamental and this year’s festival will celebrate former visions, create new ones, and explore how everyone can influence the future visions of our city and county.”
The highlights among the five key themes are:
Global Visionaries: showcasing Limerick as a global crossroads where visionary people and places resonate.
- Keynote talk on Friday 18th October in St. Mary’s Cathedral by global urbanism guru Riccardo Marini, former Director with Gehl architects, Copenhagen; Founding Marini Urbanismo in 2017, Riccardo will discuss ‘place-making’, sharing insights reflecting how people must be central to the process and in endeavours to rethink our existing space.
- Modernism at the Movies, showing on Thursday 17th October at Belltable Arts Centre, will explore modernist architecture in Limerick through a film screening event of Generate The State. This film documents the visionary building and construction techniques of Ardnacrusha, the largest building project in the world at the time in 1929, (collaboration Belltable). Tours of Ardnacrusha Power Station will take place on Sunday 20th October.
- Following a 2-month voyage to Greenland, the Ilen Project will give a presentation of Salmon’s Wake; A North Atlantic Cultural and Educational Voyage in St. Mary’s Cathedral on Saturday 19th October at 5pm, followed by The Ilen’s formal registration. The Ilen described as one of Ireland’s last timber-built ocean-going sailing ships, was designed by Limerick man Conor O’Brien and built in Baltimore in 1926, she was delivered by Munster men to the Falkland Islands where she served valiantly for seventy years.
Shared Visionaries: How architecture shapes collective visionaries. Highlights include:
- OpenHouse Junior with Escape Out of the Box, Saturday 19th October at 11am - 1pm in The Hunt Museum. Suitable for 7-10 years.
- Limerick Treasure Hunt: Exploring architectural heritage in Limerick city, running between 12pm - 5pm from Belltable on Saturday 19th October. Suited for children 4 - 12 years. In association with Bualadh Bos children's festival.
- Sketch in the City a new, all-ages and abilities-inclusive sketching and photography event taking place in Cleeves Factory on Saturday 19th October from 12pm - 3pm.
Historical Visionaries: Stories of well-known Limerick landmarks and hidden corners. Highlights include:
- A curated exhibition at Shannon Rowing Club on Sunday 20th October between 12pm - 2pm about the work of William Clifford Smith 1882-1954, in collaboration with NMA Architects and a separate curated building tour featuring Limerick landmark projects.
- The Other Georgian Limerick, an Historical Walking Tour led by archaeologist John Elliott on Sunday 20th October at 2pm, will follow the history of Nicholas Street,
- Peter Tait Trail, taking in Peter Tait’s first shirt factory on Bedford Row (Sharon Slater at 2pm on Saturday 19th October at Bedford Hotel) and his first residence at Tait House, Southill (3.30pm on Saturday 19th October). Bus transport will be provided.
- A Tea Tour at M. Cahill’s Tobacco and Snuff Factory, 47 Wickham Street, 2pm on Saturday 19th October, will include a history of the building and one of Limerick’s oldest shops since it was established in 1870.
Visionary Homes: Celebrating Limerick’s rich housing and the visions embedded within it.
- Highlights include tours of residential projects including Fort Mary Park by James Corbett Architects (2pm - 5pm Saturday 19th October), Keeper House and Lodge by Scott Tallon Walker (12pm, 1pm, 2pm Sunday 20th October), and 2 Moyola Terrace, Ennis Road on Sunday 20th October from 2.30pm - 4pm.
Civic Visionaries: Describes well-designed buildings that can improve quality of life, address climate change and enhance social interaction, supporting Ireland’s civic infrastructure and shaping our collective memories. Highlights include:
- RIAI Public Choice Awards 2019 winner Scoil Chríost Rí, Boys National School by Drake Hourigan Architects (Saturday 19th October from 11am-1pm
- RIAI New Build Workplace Award 2019 winner Gardens International Office by Carr Cotter Naessans (Saturday 19th October 12pm and 1pm
- Limerick Courthouse on Mulgrave Street designed by Wilson Architecture (Saturday 19th October 2-4pm
- New Glucksman Library at UL by RKD Architects (12pm, 1pm-3pm Sunday 20th October), and Glenstal Library by Leyden Hassett and Associates (Sunday 20th October 12pm and 1pm).
OpenHouse Limerick is proudly supported by Limerick City and County Council through its Festivals and Events Grant Scheme 2019. The festival is sponsored by Roadstone, Rogerson Reddan, Healy Partners Architects, GoCar, Cuddy QS, Joebren and the RIAI.
The Treasure Hunt project is funded by Creative Ireland and Limerick City and County Council through Creative Ireland Made in Limerick Grant 2019.
To download the full OpenHouseLimerick programme of events click here.