Verge was launched in Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT) in February 2010 as part of a partnership project involving local authority arts offices in counties Galway, Mayo, Roscommon, Leitrim, Sligo, Donegal, Clare and North Tipperary, along with GMIT’s Creative Arts Department, the GMIT Shifting Ground project, and the Arts Council of Ireland

The idea for the publication arose from a desire among its participants to make available an alternative to urban-based visual arts publications. The magazine contained articles from writers, artists and poets on issues relating to rural arts as well as profiles of pertinent projects. It also included reviews of topical exhibitions and site-specific projects.

Contributions include :

Artist Dominic Stevens provided a darkly humorous comic strip.

Poet Jo Slade’s poem ‘Neutral’ amplifies the publication along with Christina Peppard’s one hundred words on ‘Rural’.

Writer and poet Alice Lyons commented on the limitations of centralised discourses on art. There is an effort here to, in Alice Lyon’s words, transcend the ‘obdurate, insidious boundary,’ to search for an alternative to hegemonic discourse. The idea of a ‘community only becoming legitimate when it questions its own legitimacy’ is of interest to all the writers, artists and poets here concerned with questions of authenticity and legitimacy.

Writer and public art co-ordinator for Mayo County Council Gaynor Seville gives a local authority perspective on public art.

Director of The Irish Film Institute Sarah Glennie asks the pertinent question: ‘What do we really need from Public Art?’

Littoral, the non-profit making arts trust rethinks critical art practice in the context of EU agriculture reform and rural development policy

Writer and academic Tim Stott ponders the realities of remote learning.

Dr Suzanne O’Shea, Chairperson Editorial Panel, Verge, and Head of the Creative Arts Department, GMIT, described Verge as “a timely intervention in terms of creative discourse around notions of urban and rural in visual contexts. Deirdre O’ Mahony, John Langan, John Mulloy and Eileen Healy, all lecturers in the Department of Creative Arts in GMIT, were involved in site specific projects on rural themes.”

Verge was launched in the Café Foyer of GMIT’s Dublin Road campus by Dr. Siun Hanrahan, Head of Research & Postgraduate Study at NCAD. Mary Cloake, Director of The Arts Council of Ireland also spoke at the event


Copies of VERGE are available on request from Clare Arts Office