Image: Oumou Sangaré at St. Canice's Cathedral. 📸 by Dylan Vaughan Photography
For our 50th Edition we looked back at half a century of community - hearing from artists, organisers, audiences and citizens and gathering their memories and sharing stories as part of our KAF50 Exhibition.
We paid homage to Damien Harrington’s original 1974 design, with a fantastic piece of sculpture on the Castle Parade supported by Kilkenny County Council, in collaboration with CDS Architectural Metalwork and our long-time designer and collaborator Íde De Loughrey, making sure that we had our collective eye equally on our past as well as our future.
In this special anniversary year, we worked with friends old and new, bringing new work to audiences, as well as a new perspective on familiar work. We made new friends, bringing artists to Kilkenny for the first time while sowing the seeds for future collaborations and projects. We saw our wonderful city light up, as Ireland’s Medieval City found ways of telling new stories and playing new tunes.
This Festival, along with all 49 Festivals before it, was made possible by a constellation of brilliant minds and hearts: the wonderful artists who embrace the Festival with an open heart and a generosity of spirit our dedicated staff and crew who worked tirelessly in times of adversity as well as joy; our Board who have shown such leadership, dedication, support and friendship throughout their stewardship; our Volunteers, whose passion and commitment are the backbone of our success; our principal funder, the Arts Council, and core funders, Fáilte Ireland and Kilkenny County Council for their stellar support; and our sponsors and the local businesses who open their doors with warmth and hospitality to the Festival in the true spirit of partnership.
But most importantly, we thank you, our audience, who joined us from near and far to celebrate 50 years of artistic adventures in our city. Your enthusiasm, support, and participation are what truly bring Kilkenny Arts Festival to life. As we close this chapter, we look forward with excitement to the next!
Thank you for being a part of our 50th celebration and see you all in 2024!
Kilkenny Arts Festival is proudly supported by the Arts Council, Fáilte Ireland and Kilkenny County Council.
Video by Bearfoot Productions