Monday, 25 August 2014

Things looking up at the Joinery?

Update: just weeks after I wrote this, in September 2014 the Joinery announced that it would be closing down for good the following December. It has archived its online material at

From the outside it's an unassuming and slightly battered looking and unwelcoming shopfront. Apart from the distinctive green neon "J" sign in the window of course. And the geometrical signs and symbols on the shutters next door.

The Joinery is an art space on Arbour Hill (or strictly speaking Rosemount Terrace), next door to the slightly more famous Lilliput Stores grocery shop and deli in Stoneybatter.

It used to be a joinery workshop, hence the name. So the Joinery is an ongoing experiment. A gallery. Small studios. Sound performances and readings, culture nights, mini festivals, a temporary radio station. Workshops ranging from bookbinding to photography. A Christmas mini-market with hampers and a couple of stalls of artisan food. Projects, processes and ideas.

The Joinery began its new life as an art space in 2007, yet somehow it has managed to survive through eight years of recession. It's run by volunteers as a not-for-profit, and the studio and gallery space can be rented for one-off projects.

Every time I go past, I look at its roller shutter (which always seems to be down). I stare at those strange geometries painted on it in blue, black and white, and I suspect I'm looking at it the wrong way up. Which I am of course. It was designed by Ella de Burca and is called "Up".