All You Should Know About The Leather Jacket

From Protection to the Runway

The greatest aspect of fashion is the art of adaptation. We have mentioned already how formal suits and BLDs went all way through from being symbols of elegance and high society to becoming pinches of fun in casual outfits. We also brought to the table how a few lower centimetres in the skirt could give mobility, freedom and beauty to women.

Today we are going to introduce you to how an element of protection during the war became a must-have in all closets for decades:  the Leather Jacket.

Leather Jackets were introduced to the society, in the colour brown, in the early 1900 by the U.S Army as an item for aviators. The mission of this fashionable jacket was to keep the USA men fighting in the I World War sufficiently warm, regardless the weather conditions. It worked so well that Leslin Irvin repeated this same army item in the II World War adding the sheepskin inside it. Afterwards, in 1921, still in the I WW, the bomber jackets were created and worn by various government agencies and defence and military departments.

Figure 2 Image from Wikipedia
Figure 1 Image from Wikipedia

In the 60s and 70s the leather jacket became more popular with the image of a tough and determined guy through Hollywood movies and through the music industry, that connected the heavy material jacket with rock and punk styles.

Ramones is a huge example of this influence. 

Figure 3 Image from

It is worth to mention that this item was and still is an important element to motor bikers as a protective equipment but also used as a fashionable garment. Nowadays, it is easy to see men, women, children and elderly wearing this piece not just as protection, but mainly as a great way to look casual, cool and comfortable.

The black traditional leather jacket has been in the fashion industry since people noticed its beauty and versatility, and very soon it started to be made in different colours. Recently the leather jacket with sheepskin inside was a huge trend, especially in Europe and USA, as well as the bomber jacket, which now we can also find in other materials. The huge difference between that time that the leather jacket was a point of survival and today is that nowadays it is easier to find these jackets with eco-friendly materials instead of real animal materials. It means we can still look nice and fashionable without denigrating nature.

Figure 5 Image from Pintrest

A nice way of wearing this versatile piece of clothing is with a very girly dress, creating a great contrast of romantic and rocker style.

Another way is with formal clothes to balance serenity and casual or even with a simple pair of jeans and a plain white t-shirt, giving to the jacket all the job of powerfulness.

Figure 4 personal photo from Lumi Hemmi

The leather jacket is a cool garment, but it can also be an item to remind us that simple things can protect and warm us in the war inside or outside ourselves.

Lumi Hemmi
Training Coord, Fashion Lover, Concretism Poetry Writer and Dreamer.

How to support museums during lockdown

Level 3 restrictions are upon us here in Ireland for at least a few weeks more, and the future is uncertain. The whole world is suffering with this pandemic and the economic effects are going to be huge. As our members are mostly from South-America, we can easily recognize the privilege to be living in a country like Ireland during such a hard time. But also, as arts and culture professionals we know that this sector is going to be highly affected by the crisis – it already has been. Museums and cultural institutions had to close during the first part of lockdown for four or five months until being able to open their doors again. Unfortunately just around two months after the reopening those organizations had to close their doors again for the public – first in Dublin, and a few weeks later in the whole country. Needless to say that the impact of the restrictions are enormous for the tourism and cultural sectors. We would like to emphasize here that we are not by any means criticizing the measures taken for the safety of the people, we are just highlighting the negative effects.

Ilustration: Canva

And we are here doing so to show our readers that there is always a way to support the institutions! Even though you can’t visit your favourite museums, galleries and theatres there is much you can do to help them to keep their doors open in the future. 

A few museums have gardens and outdoors spaces that you can still visit, and cafes and shops that are still open. I’m sure that even the smallest purchase is much appreciated by the institutions.

Some museums have online shops – so you can not only support the museums but also have items from places that maybe you never visited before!

A really nice way to support museums in this difficult time, for those who can afford it, is buying their memberships. Most have special treats for their members and by becoming a member you usually can enjoy your benefits for a year!  The memberships are a great way to support museums at any time, this year specially!

If your reality is more complicated and you are not able to support museums and cultural institutions financially don’t worry! There’s always another option! Most museums are adapting to the new digital era and are creating lots of online content for their public. Visit their websites, check what they have been doing in their social media, interact, share… Museums and artists are doing all they can to survive this difficult time and to make sure people can still access art and culture even though they can not leave their homes to do so. We all understand that art in all its forms is essential for our well being, and by accessing those online content you are not just taking care of your mental health but also letting those professionals who are working hard to make all this available digitally know that their work is worth it. 

2020 is highlighting the need to be compassionate and stick together. If we support museums and other cultural organizations now we are taking a step to make sure they will be able to reopen when the time comes and we will all be able to visit them again!

Flora Gusmao

Brazilian Historian with MBA in Museum Management – based in Dublin, Ireland

Skirts and the female empowerment

The Midi Length and Long Achievement

It is difficult to say that a trend in fashion is completely extinct. Most (or I would say all) go through a cycle of being under the highlights and temporarily hidden in the backstage. The brightest thing about an item of clothing that is back to the runway is that it brings to the present moment the history, the fights and glories behind the fabrics.
Regarding all these words, I have the pleasure to present what is “the brightest” behind the midi-skirt. This comfortable and feminine bottom which nowadays we can easily find in different formats, styles and even fabrics, brings itself an important event in history: it carries the responsibility of marking when white women started taking place at men’s work, as their husbands were in the front line of the II World War.

Pictures : Pinterest

We understand there are many differences between the empowerment process of the white and the black women, in this case here we are taking the European, 20 century woman as a reference.

Although they entered into the business world very timidly, only in the back of the factories, we had that unique, tragic but, in the same time, lovely moment that created the opportunity to show the world that it is possible for women to have the guts to make money, build a house, a family, and a life even without a husband, as many of them lost their lives in the war. Since the first time women rolled up their sleeves, the world opened many doors and windows never visible before.
To combine with this extremely important event in history, we needed an element that translated elegance and sensuality into comfort and practicality. In that case, what better than a fluid skirt?
Before the midi-skirt, women used to wear long and heavy skirts and dresses, garments that made simple movements such as walking and sitting very difficult. Noticing the need for agility in that new routine, Coco Chanel made the midi length skirts an important trend in that period. The simple and innovative idea of cutting the long skirt (which touched the ground) gave them not only speed but also let them breathe a little, putting confidence in the place of the pressure of always being immaculate in long clothes.

Figure 2 Image from Farol da Bahia

After the war, the economy was not stable, so clothes were not an essential item in the “to buy” list. Then, Christian Dior created his biggest piece of art, the entitled “New Look”, featuring rounded shoulders, a cinched waist, and a very full midi-skirt. The stupendous insight of cutting 10 cm of the skirt (even for the ones who did not work) saved an amount of money that made it possible for women to buy new clothes.

Figure 3 Image from Art and Culture – The New Look

Both Channel and Dior were essential in the creation of this skirt, which were initially made to make life easier, lighter and fluid, but are until the present moment an elegant, comfy and fashionable garment.

Figure 4 Image from Pinterest

For now on, all the time you wear a midi-skirt remember you are wearing comfort, but mainly the powerful liberty of being integrated in the working field, choosing to be who you want to be.

Lumi Hemmi
Training Coord, Fashion Lover, Concretism Poetry Writer and Dreamer.

Artists Around the World

Danilo Marinho is an independent artist, drummer, percussionist, educator and poet who performs poetic shows of short duration and small format for different audiences. Since the beginning of its trajectory, he has tried to encourage and collaborate with the debate and reflection on themes that have a direct impact on society, such as racism, the environment, immigration, using poetry and music as an artistic expression.

Its aesthetics is reaffirmed through the union of these two languages, using, in addition to musical instruments, materials found on the street, such as tubes and metal plates. Danilo’s vital core is concentrated in more than 15 years of walking with the collaborative artistic work between Recife (Brazil), Barcelona (Spain) and Africa. Its development is based from popular culture to current culture, thus producing a dynamic, participatory and versatile show.

Personal Archive

In just one year, Natura was present in several cities such as Barcelona and Madrid, and in important spaces such as La Rubia Teatre in Barcelona, ​​the Center for Contemporary Culture in Barcelona – CCCB, the Center for Artistic Residencies, at the Festival Conscience Afro 2019 in Madrid and Livraria Cultura in Recife (Brazil).

 It is a journey, a window for experiences. With the organic versatility of Afro-Brazilian percussion, the Natura show creates an intimate, collective and plural environment, which reinvents itself every moment and joins the experience of walking for everyone. “It is a statement in the form of thanks to nature for having allowed me to obtain all the knowledge I have and through the dialogue with percussion, poetry, expressing my words and interpreting them”.

This year, Danilo launches his first book, Tambores no Silencio, and will launch his first video clip, with the poesy Gueto to be present at the 5th Festival of Poetry in Lisbon.

Chiara Rucks and Danilo Marinho

4 things the artists would like you to know

I was talking to a few artists this week and I realized how recurrent and frustrating it is some reactions from the public when negotiating a sale. Specially because most of them are frightened by the commercial feeling of this transaction I decided to write this list to help them and the buyer to understand their place.

1 -When you ask for a quotation you are asking for a quotation

When you want to buy any product you will ask the price and check if it is affordable to you. It is not because you cant pay that it is not worthy. You don’t ask for a discount at a expensive designer store or when you buy a ticket to go to a famous band concert.

2 – But It is fine to try to negotiate

Specially small businesses or beginners can do a special offer but you wont get a discount by underestimating someone’s work.

Source : Canvas / Chiara Rucks

3 – And yes if you don’t like when people underestimate your work and efforts why to do that to someone else?

Would you like to hear that your wage will be cut in half because your client didn’t like it?

4 – At last but not less important art is a matter of taste, a matter of finding what you like.

In a world where large production is still the rule, having a unique artwork is the timeless most outstanding fashion trend.

Chiara Rucks

Cultural Producer, Art Curator and Co-funder of Artmulti Brazil

What the black dress and the female empowerment have in common

Elegance and Simplicity in Black

Fashion is an element of behaviourism. We easily translate our thoughts, beliefs and desires through the fabric, material, design and colors we choose to wear, to show ourselves to the world. More than a powerful tool of communication without words, fashion evolves hand in hand with humanity, telling the life style of each period in beautiful details. That’s what happened with the traditional must-have of all decades: the Little Black Dress (LBD).

Figure 1 Image from Medium

This simple and chic piece of clothes was introduced by world-famous Coco Chanel, who entitled this timeless trend as Little Black Dress. Chanel’s work of art was published on Vogue in 1926 (see picture bellow). The dress had a lovely sense of minimal outfit with a pinch of statement accessories. It was simple and comfortable, but elegant and powerful at the same time. It was perfectly balanced to alert all women that clothes will never give us more tools of beauty than our own attitudes, but it contributes in a delightful way, just like a touch of rose.

Although it carries the concept of a practical and simple dress, in that time the LBD was considered a sophisticated piece of clothing, which women of high society would wear in different occasions due to its versatility.

However, as this subtle dress has already been seen many times in history, decade after decade it became more and more popular. Some of the occasions we can easily find a woman in LBD are: during the Great Depression as it is an easy way to be seen as pretty; in World War II as part of uniforms of business wear; in the rise of feminism, seen as a symbol of a dangerous and strong woman and also in different Hollywood movies.

The movie that gave major notoriety to the Little Black Dress wasBreakfast at Tiffany’s”. This romantic comedy film made the black dress as popular and remarkable as never before. As soon as the movie was released, different women all over the world aspired to have that simple and sexy dress named “The black Givenchy dress” worn by the actress Audrey Hepburn.

Figure 2 Image from Pintrest

After almost a hundred years this cocktail dress was shown to the world, it is still a must have in most wardrobes, being easily found in sophisticated stores or in fast fashion shops; in short, long, midi length; from low-cut to long neck; in grunge, high-low and chic styles, but always in black, and always reminding us that simple can also be strong, because the strength does not come from the clothes, it comes from within.

Figure 3 Image from Lulu and Sky / Figure 4 Image from Bewakoof/ Figure 5 Image from Missguided        

   Lumi Hemmi

Training Coord, Fashion Lover, Concretism Poetry Writer and Dreamer.

Why reading helps you to adapt to a new culture

How literature is helping me understand the country that I’m living in 

When I first moved to Ireland, in October 2018, I was struggling a bit to understand the Irish people and culture. At some point I still am, even after almost two years living in Dublin. Although we share, to some extent, the same Western culture, each country has its own history and individualities. As many similarities as there are between Brazillians and Irish, the differences troubled me.   

Don’t get me wrong, I loved Ireland from the beginning. This country truly is magical and beautiful, and the people are very friendly. But there is more to it… I felt a need to understand more about the country’s History and its people, why they are so friendly and nice, but also so gloomy and with a unique sense of humor. 

To better understand the people and the country I’m living in I decided to learn more about Irish History and culture. Knowing more about the History of Ireland definitely made things more clear to me, but what is really doing the trick is reading Irish literature. The books opened my eyes, and I finally started to understand and truly see the people from this country. Through the characters from the books I started to comprehend the people who welcomed me here. 

One book that was really important to me in this process is Nuala O’Faolain “Are you somebody”? Nuala O’Faolain (1940-2008) was an Irish woman who had a very interesting life, and worked as a journalist, writer, TV producer, book editor and teacher. In 1996 her autobiography “Are you somebody” was published, and it had a big impact in Irish society. She was able to bring up difficult themes, to speak about things people were afraid of saying out loud and she had no fear of mentioning names of real people in her life, some of them famous. Her writing is so authentic and captivating… Personally I’m not a huge fan of reading biographies, but after I started this one I couldn’t stop reading… The characters are so fascinating, Nuala sounded to me like such an amazing woman, strong and inspiring, and with no fear of speaking her mind!  I was impressed by her writing and boldness, her honesty. I would dare to say this book is raw, in a very good way. Raw because it sounds honest to the bones, like life is, or at least like it was for Nuala and many other Irish of her time.

MoLI – The Museum of Literature Ireland, located at the heart of Dublin City, recently opened an exhibition about Nuala O’Faolain, that is composed of an amazing film installation. The film is curated by June Caldwel, Irish writer and Nuala’s friend. Like the book, the film also has a kind of hypnotic feeling, that you just can’t stop watching. You can book tickets for this exhibition and more on MoLI’s website.

Photography: Chiara Rucks

“Are you somebody?” was really relevant in my ongoing journey through Irish literature, but not the only one. I have been reading many books since last year that are changing my perspective about this country – I love it more and more. 

Flora Gusmao, Brazilian Historian with MBA in Museum Management – based in Dublin, Ireland

Why You Should Visit these Three Castles in Dublin

Why You Should Visit these Three Castles in Dublin 

Irish castles and ruins are famous, often used as scenarios for movies and series, they are magnificent touristic points.  

They are a beautiful attraction that also teaches us about the country’s history and culture. How much you learn about it and how deep this knowledge goes depends on the time you want to spend visiting it, also your interest in reading all the information provided. 

There are 30,000 castles and ruins spread all over Ireland, according to an unofficial count, but only a dozen or so offer you the chance to feel like you have stepped back in time by entering the rooms, seeing yourself surrounded by antique furniture and sometimes even smelling the must of old books and documents. 

These three castles are easily accessible from Dublin, find out why you should visit them even more than once. 

Photographer: Juliana Borges

 Ardgillan Castle 

Although referred to as a castle Ardgillan was, actually, an 18th-century country house. Originally called ‘Prospect House’, it was the Taylors’ dwell for more than two hundred years. 

Located in Balbriggan, it is a short 30 min drive from Dublin, or you can use the bus No. 33 from Eden Quay

To enter the castle there is a €5 fee. It doesn’t require booking in advance but the castle can be hired for private events, so it is a good idea to check out the availability the day you intend to go. 

 Why you should visit Ardgillan Castle 

It is a great option for a day out. There is an area reserved for BBQs, where you can celebrate a special occasion in a small group unless you prefer to hire the entire castle to celebrate in big style.  

The little ones won’t be bored, the playground is a good size and there is a Fairy Trail.  

Inside, going through the ancient personal belongings, documents, and the history panels up on the walls you can learn more about Irish Culture and the history of this piece of land. We won’t spoil your visit by telling you the whole history here, go check it out. 

Moreover, the garden around the castle is large and beautiful, we recommend visiting many times even if it is just to walk the trail around the park. 

  1. Malahide Castle 

Easily accessed by bus routes from Dublin city centre, or by DART,  this gorgeous Irish castle is very popular for a day out. 

The land of Malahide was gifted to The Talbots by King Henry II for his services to the crown. It has undergone huge changes until it got to what we see today.

Caixa de Texto

By learning about the family owners and the castle, we learn about the culture and history of Ireland and how it reverberates today. 

 Why should you visit Malahide Castle? 

It is not only about the castle but everything that surrounds it. There is plenty of green space to lie around and enjoy the sun,  whenever it remembers that Ireland exists and decides to shiny on us. 

The area around the castle is so enchanting that even if you already visited it is worth going back. You know these days when you are feeling like you need fresh air and something to boost your mood, this is the place to go. 

The village around it offers great options for restaurants, cafes, shops and bars. 

  1. Dublin Castle 

Dublin Castle is so merged into Dublin’s City centre touristic scenario that many people often forget that it is, in fact, a castle.  

Not as tall as the other ones but equally mesmerizing, this building has always been of importance for the government, for the British administration before Ireland’s Independence then handed over to the new Irish government in 1922. 

Many important events and celebration happen in this place to this date. If you are a Dublin dweller you have probably come across one or two. 

Why should you visit Dublin Castle? 

To learn more about the culture of the country through history, also the architecture is quite impressive. It is easy to fit in any day out scheduled around the city as it is walking distance from many points of interest, like St Patricks Cathedral and Trinity College.  

It is a must-see if you are visiting the city for the first time and a great idea to include in a day-tour during a staycation, when we visit somewhere more than once we always find new ways to look at it. 

Caixa de Texto

Furthermore, the castle is important for government events and for citizens, who also use the landmark to commemorate important dates in history, like the “YES” vote to gay marriage when people gathered around Dublin Castle’s patio area to celebrate the result. 

Juliana Borges

The reasons why you should visit the National Museum of Ireland

Be a tourist in your own city – exploring Dublin museums with free admission

The National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology 

We are back with our second post about museums with free admission in Dublin. After a week of decent weather, we might face a few days with the traditional Irish rain… So why not enjoy the rainy days to explore the museums of our city with a cup of tea afterwards? 

The National Museum of Ireland has four different buildings, each one housing different collections. The first one was built in Kildare Street and opened to the public in 1890, displaying coins, medals, Irish antiquities from the Royal Irish Academy, ethnographic collections and much more. That’s the building we are going to talk about today.

The National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology

The building, on Kildare Street, was built in the Victorian Palladian style and designed by the architects Thomas Newenham Deane and his son Thomas Manly Deane. Today it is the home of the archaeological collections of the National Museum of Ireland.

Photograph: Flora Gusmao

The collections are very rich and interesting. The permanent exhibitions are: 

The Treasury, allocated in three galleries, regarding the development of Irish Art from the Iron Age to the twelfth century AD; 

Ór – Ireland’s Gold, a collection of prehistoric goldwork ranges from 2200 BC to 500 BC; 

Prehistoric Ireland, about human settlement in Ireland from 7000 BC to the Late Bronze Age around  500 BC; Viking Ireland, regarding the Viking Age in Ireland through surviving objects from 800 AD; 

Ceramics and Glass from Ancient Cyprus, displaying Cypriot artefacts, mostly ceramic from tombs uncovered in the 19th century and dated from the Bronze Age to the late Roman period. 

Photograph: Flora Gusmao

The museum also has temporary exhibitions, like Clontarf 1014: Brian Boru and the Battle for Dublin, regarding myths about Brian Boru and the Battle of Clontarf. There you can see Viking and Irish weapons, precious silver objects and religious treasures on display. Unfortunately at the date of the completion of this post a few exhibitions were temporarily closed, but still there is much to see!

My opinion as a historian and medievalist might be a little biased, but this museum is definitely one of my favourites! If you have any interest in History, this is a place you can’t miss! The artefacts are fascinating, the collections are diverse and from different periods, and the building is so beautiful, I  personally love the flooring! 

Photograph: Flora Gusmao

The admission to the museum is still free, but due to the current situation it’s necessary to book a visit online. Tickets can be booked up to and including 15 minutes before a timed visit if capacity is available. Don’t forget to take a look at the shop and support the museum if you can!

Flora Gusmao

Brazilian Historian with MBA in Museum Management – based in Dublin, Ireland

Dublin Canvas and the social need for urban art

Add colours to the city and transform objects into open-air galleries. Replace the grey giving space to ideas. This is the goal of the project that emerged in Dublin a few years ago (2013) and continues to adorn the city and delight everyone.

In 2006 David Murtagh had the idea to paint the electricity boxes. He was in Australia and saw a similar project in the Brisbane region. He submitted the project to the Dublin City Council, but it was initially rejected.

At the request of the agency, David proceeded to develop a pilot project in the Temple Bar area. The project worked and today there are about 500 energy boxes painted by artists of different ages and of different nationalities: Brazilians, Mexicans, Canadians. More than half are not Irish. The Dublin Canvas slogan is “Less gray, more play”.

And among the authors there are many amateurs, such as doctors, accountants and others.


Each artist has his work fixed for one year. To participate in the selection – which usually starts in April / May and continues until the end of September, there are requirements. Among them, being over 18 years old and enjoying painting.

An important fact: financial aid for the purchase of the material is provided.
Detailed information is available at

The project has an email if you have any further questions:

Carla Monte Rey

Brazilian / Italian journalist based in Dublin

Vivacity and Power in Suits

Fashion is the art of presenting who you are and what you believe through the fabric and accessories on your body. In the same way of everything in art, fashion has the power of describing the movements, issues, thoughts and achievements of each time in history.
Today, on the catwalks of the streets it is easily seen women in coordinate pastel tones suits. The blazer and the chic trousers give the sense of professionalism and elegance through the idea of “office girl” as well as the structure and fine sewing of these beautiful pieces. In the other hand, there is a pinch of fun and casual style shown by the different colours.

Figure 1 Image from Atlantic Pacific

This trend comes from the 70’s decade, when the Second Feminism Wave movement was happening. Women all over the world went to the streets, spoke to the press and, in some cases, sacrificed their lives for freedom of expression, equal rights, sex ethics and for respect in all sections of life, all levels in the world. This historical event is considered a successful movement, which gave not only visibility to the “girl power” but also the possibility for more women to study in college, to work in big companies and make the difference girls can make in the world.
This mark in history also gave women the freedom to wear trousers more eventually, making girls more decisive about the clothes and accessories to wear. This simple achievement gave us the powerful choice to be more comfortable not only in vestures, but also in attitude, resulting in confidence and self love.

Figure 2 Image from Scape the Seventies

We dress up for big events accordingly to its importance and this event needed a piece of clothes which represented the vivacity and the strength all women have inside. Nothing better than a powerful suit that instantly gives you confidence to walk on the streets as if you were on the runway.
All times you see yourself in a suit, remember: You are powerful! You are beautiful!

Lumi Hemmi
Training Coordinator, Fashion Lover, Concretism Poetry Writer and Dreamer.

Don’t be fooled by the Imposter Syndrome

In my experience as an art curator I face everyday the challenge to help other people and myself on our artistic process. And more than all one of the biggest problems that the artists face is the fear of the judgement. We all do ask ourselves if we are good enough, if people will like our work but for the artists themselves they do expose their feelings and weaknesses, they may share their deepest secrets on their artwork and being so naked, so exposed in front of other may be too difficult sometimes. The fear of the judgement and of whatever may come with it can make you doubt your own capacity and skills.

I have heard no as an answer many times in my life but none of them came from myself.

When you don’t try something new, when you postpone dreams you are telling yourself a huge no.

Van Gogh had nothing on his favour. He had no money, no conditions and too many people criticizing his artwork and being extremely negative but he believed he could do better and that if he worked and believed hard enough he would be famous someday. He gave up before getting there but his efforts still speak for himself.

Source : Az Quotes

Don’t give up before crossing the final line. There is no magic answer or way to success. Just keep learning, working, promoting your work (which is one of the most important things) and have faith specially in yourself. Do not deny or underestimate your work but learn from your mistakes and seek constant improvement.

Be inspired and carry on. 

Chiara Rucks

Cultural Producer, Art Curator and Co-funder of Artmulti Brazil

Be a Tourist in Your Own City

Exploring Dublin museums with free admission

After almost four months in quarantine, spending our summer inside our own houses, or at best in back gardens or nearby parks, we all feel like going out more and exploring the city. Most of us couldn’t wait for the restrictions to be lifted to be able to enjoy a bit of cultural life that isn’t through a screen. Now that most cultural institutions are open in Dublin, and following Government recommendations for safety, we can finally throw ourselves in the cultural scene! But the pandemic affected the whole world and many people felt a negative effect in their pockets. Right now things are still generally unstable – a few of our neighbours in Ireland are already facing another lockdown for at least two weeks, and even though many people can’t wait to travel abroad to enjoy the last chances of a summer trip, the Government recommendations are to avoid unessential travels to other countries. Considering all that, our best option is to take this as an opportunity to enjoy the city and the country we live in. Ireland is such a beautiful island and full of culture to explore! Thinking about those like us that suffered financially with the pandemic and for many reasons cannot travel now, we are launching a series of posts about free cultural places to explore in Ireland, starting by the capital. 

The National Gallery of Ireland

The National Gallery of Ireland houses a collection of over 16,300 artworks that cover the history of western European art, from around 1300 to the present day, including paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings, photographs, archival and bibliographical material. There are a lot of famous artists displayed in the gallery, like Caravaggio, Francisco José de Goya, Johannes Vermeer, Rembrandt van Rijn, Jack B. Yeats, Picasso, Monet, Mantegna, Titian and more. In addition to the museum galleries with their permanent collection, The National Gallery also has great temporary exhibitions, that might have a fee.  

Photo: Flora Gusmao

The National Gallery of Ireland opened its door to the public for the first time on 30 January 1864, after ten years of campaigns for the funding of the building, designed by Francis Fowke and with its exterior replicating that of its neighbour, the Natural History Museum (that will be making its own appearance here in the coming weeks). At the time the collection consisted of 112 pictures, so we can see how it has grown since its birth. Since the collection grew the building also had to grow, having undergone through extensions and repairs over the years.

Photo: Flora Gusmao

Both, building and collection, are worth a visit! 

Photo: Flora Gusmao

The National Gallery of Ireland is located at Merrion Square West, in Dublin 2. The opening hours are Monday 11am to 5.30pm, Tuesday to Saturday 9.45am to 5.30pm and Sunday 11.30am to 5.30pm. All the galleries are now open and you can also visit some of the temporary exhibitions. The shop is open, but the Gallery café is currently closed. You should enter via the Merrion Square entrance and exit via Clare Street. There’s no need to book in advance. Please note that due to the uncertain times we are living in that information may change – we recommend that you always check the opening hours before going to any museum.

Although our goal with this series of posts is to encourage people to explore their own city on a low budget, bear in mind that museums and all cultural institutions were also highly affected by the lockdown. If you can support them in any way, I’m sure that even the smallest act will be much appreciated. You can give a donation, buy something at the shop, or if you are in a better place, become a member of the organization. But remember: even your presence in those places already shows support to the cultural scenario!

Flora Gusmao

Brazilian Historian with MBA in Museum Management – based in Dublin, Ireland

Art Installation ‘seals’ the peace between Irish Writers

The two Irish writers who shared the same apartment during a period of their lives, but who ended up and never speaking again. They “return to talk” in this tribute made in Dublin by the pub that bears the name of one of them: Oliver St. John Gogarty. The poet, senator, surgeon, cyclist and medallist of the 1924 summer Olympics in Paris (literature), sits at ease on the bench. It was observed by James Joyce. They studied at Trinity College and did have the same address in Sandycove (Martello Tower, Dublin) when Joyce started writing Ulysses. Gogarty is the inspiration for the character Buck Mulligan.

Photographer: Carla Monte Rey

A misunderstanding ended the friendship, and many years later Oliver moved to the United States, where he died in 1957, at the age of 63.

With this beautiful tribute the peace making was sealed for the up coming generations. Such a beautiful and inspiring installation.

Carla Monte Rey

Brazilian / Italian Journalist based in Dublin

Dubliners and the Fairies

I am in love with the relationship between the Irish people and the fairies. Who has ever seen a tree like this elsewhere, full of colourful little doors? I hadn’t ever seen ! It’s so much detail that I I wanted to check every part of it.

Photo: Carla Monte Rey ( Saint Anne’s Park)

When a person searches in books and on the internet, most of the reports that exist in Ireland are that these small creatures can bring bad luck. What a
damn thing! I prefer to look for other point of views. Because talking to people here in Ireland, they admire elementary beings.

The adults who work with me tell me that the fairies exist and are good with those who are good with them. That they protect children. I saw an Irish documentary in which people who see fairies are interviewed!

Photo: Chiara Rucks (Phoenix Park)
Photo: Chiara Rucks ( Drimnagh)

The photo of the fairy tree is in St. Annes Park, north of Dublin. The park is about 110 hectares and it belonged to the Guinness brothers (Arthur and Benjamin). This was on the 19th century. On the 20th century, the land passed to the brothers’ nephew, a bishop who had no heirs. He lived in the park’s mansion. The building caught fire and after that the area was donated to the population of the municipality.
I sent a message to the community’s park and they replied me. The tree had to be cut but after that, a fairy door appeared in it. And so, one by one, it was filled with doors made by families that brought their children to the Park.

What about you? Do you believe in fairies?

Carla Monte Rey

Brazilian / Italian journalist based in Dublin

Dublin and The Art Nouveau

Colorful, cheerful and inspiring. This is one of the places where literature, painting and bohemia come together in Dublin. It is the front of Bloom’s Hotel, in the heart of the Temple Bar district. The author of the beautiful painting is James Earley, born in Ireland in 1981 and whose family already has a tradition in the art of painting stained glass.

The inspiration for the hotel came from the Irish writer James Joyce, in his book Ulysses. James (the painter) did detailed research on the book, whose main characters are Leopold Bloom and Stephen Dedalus. It is all inspired on the Art Nouveau, and it was also based on works by the artist Alphons Mucha, who painted at the same period of time that Joyce was writing Ulysses (1922 was published). The artwork at the hotel took one year to be finished. If you want to stay over there you will have to wait a little bit. Because of the pandemic, it will reopened just on 10th August. Luckily, we can see the wonderful artwork on the wall any time.

Carla Monte Rey

Brazilian / Italian journalist based in Dublin

Isn’t it Time to Start a ‘Techno Art’ Revolution?

This year came changing everything and Covid 19 brought new challenges to all sectors and it would not be different for the arts.

With the social distance we face the restrictions of contact that turn it difficult for cultural events to be developed or for the public to attend to a gallery or theatre.

But like everything else we have 2 options, complain about the situation or look for new ways to work. Isn’t it time for the arts to reinvent themselves? We can count with virtual galleries and exhibition, festival lives on social media and many other tools. But isn`t it time to reinvent ways to live and do art?

Nowadays people are back to sharing houses which leaves many people with absence of space to hold within their homes large paintings and sculptures. On the other hand, we do have the collectors and interior designers that will look for specific artwork that matches their needs which will not apply for most of the existent work. I know it is a delicately territory this one. I just want to make you think. What is the existent kind of technology that I could use to improve the acceptance of my work on this market? People are more and more turned into the technologies anyway. How do you think the millennials will want to consume art if they are so devices centred since little kids?

I do not mean we have to abandon the old ways but to be open to the new ways. Whoever better adapts  themselves are the ones that survives.

Chiara Rucks

Cultural Producer, Art Curator and Co-funder of Artmulti Brazil


Did you know that the streets of Dublin have their own version of the Last Supper? It is near the River Liffey, where they call the Italian quarter. There are several small restaurants in this space. It is a combination of 9 photographic panels, which represent the contemporary view of Leonardo Da Vinci’s work. In 2003 the artist John Byrne (born in Belfast, Northern Ireland) was invited to make the photographic panels for the businessman Mick Wallace, who wanted to decorate the place. Mick liked wine, Italy and Juventus (he has the jersey on the artwork). Byrne chose the Last Supper as a model and Dublin’s cultural diversity as the highlight. The background of the work is a mixture of photos of places in Dublin (churches, Fourcourts, etc.). Members are chosen people from the community: construction workers, student, environmentalist, librarian, tattoo artist, etc.

The scene was set up at the Temple Bar. The photos set up the 2.20 x 9.30 panels, printed in Belgium (9 smaller panels in all) and gathered here in the Irish capital in 2004.


=What a wonderful example of art for all. Did you like to know that?

|Carla Monte Rey |

Brazilian / Italian journalist based in Dublin

Art Made Easy

  Just like a game of chess art has its own rules that we call styles. And each style was influenced that political and social aspects of the artist’s life. What the artists paint is basically how they applied those rules in their own game. It is interesting to be guessing what they where inspired for, what are the materials they have used, or what were they thinking while doing their art. And when something about their work touches you, reminds you of a memory, brings you joy or makes you think of something about life, that is when you should buy it.

After the 20 century most of the art styles are based on abstracted, intuitive concepts.
It is common to hear people saying  “my nephew can draw like that” when in front of some abstract art. Even though it is just a style and artists can design in other formats, it is a matter of context. By bringing art to the minimum bases as shapes, lines and colours the artist express their own feelings and thoughts in an intuitive way. Therefore, it is not just paint on the canvas. They try new textures, new lights, new shapes, new colours. Most of the time artists are experimenting things and put on the canvas what they feel like painting to express their sentiments.

Those are some of the style artists use basically for the contemporary art but there are many more than that. But here we go:

Realism – As the name says, in this style the artists tries to approach the art to the reality. You will see how the used of colours, shadows and drawing to try to make things seem as natural as possible. Observe the details.

Modernism – Everything that is modern tries to break with past rules. That is what this style is about. If you try to see how the artist from the 1870 to 1920 tried to avoid the patters in all kinds of artistic expression you will understand what they were trying to say. It is also in this period that we have more space for women working as artists and that was a huge break with the system.

Impressionism – For these artists the painting was and is a study of light. They wanted to explore it and all the nuances of the colour on the landscape to express how sublime it could be.

Expressionism – In this particular style artists are supposed to express reality with the nuances of their own feelings. It is wonderful to try to understand how the artist feels based on their work.

Abstract – Abstract represents the feeling and thought of the break with all kinds of patterns, means freedom by the way. We have many branches classified by geometric or non-abstract by in all terms it means freedom of thought, intuition and expression.

Cubism – It is one of the geometric types of abstract art based on the fact that everything that exists can be represented by geometric shapes. It is really interesting to see what artists find out when comparing things.

Surrealism – Nothing is what it seems.  They try to confuse your senses by bringing objects with different shapes that are not what you thought they were going to be on the first place, definitely a game worth playing.

Pop – Not a trick one to recognise, you can identify a pop art easily with all the cartoons and eccentric colours right away. It is manly used for designer nowadays, but the concept is interesting. Besides the fact that it is one of the best ones for decorative purposes for being, young, cool, colourful and represents the art for the everyone, considered more accessible. We can’t ignore this quality. How tricky this is is something for another discussion 😊 

Hope this small introduction helped you to understand a little bit more about art. If you have any question and comments leave in below and I will get back to you.

Chiara Rucks

Cultural Producer, Art Curator and Co-funder of Artmulti Brazil

|VAI Offers Prizes For Irish Artists|

Artists who live in Ireland or live abroad and have Irish citizenship can participate of the Open Call/DCC/VAI Art Writing Award 2020.

Dublin City Council and Visual Artists Ireland invite applications for the Prize. The winner will receive €1000.
It’s the opportunity to promote the critical dialogue around contemporary visual arts.
During Covid-19, many views about our world have been changing and now the virtual exhibitions are more and more taken place. And this is just the beginning of the discussion about the “new normal way of life”.
To participate in the open call, artists don’t need to present a completed essay. But they must submit a detailed proposal about theirs arguments. What must be discussed, main themes and material of reference to debate it.
Other informations are available at
The deadline to send the proposal is 21st August, at midnight.

Carla Monte Rey

Brazilian / Italian Journalist based in Dublin

Create your website with
Get started