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The Gallery of Photography Temple Bar

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Paintings and sculpture are all well and good, but some of us like a bit more realism, and to appreciate the art of those who can capture the world around us and reflect it back to us in a way we have never experienced before. If this sounds like you, then this is the gallery for you.

Meander down to Meeting House Square in Dublin's most hip, arty and funky area, Temple Bar. A maze of cobbled streets just off Dame Street and parallel to the River Liffey, this district contains all that is cool and cultural, from Irish pubs to art galleries, theatres, international restaurants, record stores, vintage clothes, teashops and and everything in between. What an appropriate place then, to discover The Gallery of Photography.

If you have a lust for life through a lens, then get thee to this funky joint. Conceived in 1978 and funded by the Irish Arts Council is a not-for-profit enterprise, relying on sponsorships and donations to keep this community amenity alive. The Gallery provides facilities for local photographers who are members, with darkrooms for hire and digital imaging facilities. The purpose built space does not hold a permanent exhibition; instead it permanently rotates new and fresh exhibitions. The modernist building architecture only just hints at the cool and suave contents within.

Don't expect to see people in shorts and baseball caps with oversized Nikons lumbering around here; this gallery is way too sophisticated for that.

Instead of having a permanent exhibition, the Gallery rotates exhibitions by already established and new and exciting photographers. You may stumble upon the photographic equivalent of a thesis from Dublin University students, or you may open the shutter on vintage prints by the likes of Sean Sexton. Would you like to see Ireland's past captured on film? Whatever your preference, you will be happily surprised and intrigued by the prints of the past and future on display at the Gallery.

It's generally a quiet and often over-looked gem, so you can stroll around its rooms uninterrupted, with plenty of time to soak up the atmosphere. This is a gallery you will definitely enjoy if you like people watching, soul searching and the essence of life captured for an instant; frozen moments of time. It's a compact space, and you won't need more than an hour or so to see everything, so it's great for whiling away spare time.

The Gallery also runs free public seminars and lectures, so be sure to check out in advance what's on and when before you head there. There are guided tours for groups only, although the staff are friendly and helpful and won't hestitate to give you information and context to any of the pieces which strike your imagination.

The Gallery Bookshop on the first level stocks Ireland's widest range of photographic publications as well as a selection of books priced to sell; the range includes rare editions and a wide range of interesting and unique postcards.

Entrance is free.
The Gallery and Bookshop are open:
Tuesdays through Saturdays 11am - 6pm
Sundays 1-6pm.
Closed Mondays


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