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    Saturday, August 6th, 2022
    George Mounsey Wheatley Atkinson – Naval Steam Frigate moored off Queenstown (with Haulbowline in the background) 

    Links to Titanic and Lusitania are just one part of the extraordinary history of Cork Harbour.  There is still time to catch a glimpse of just how deep and wide that history is at the Port of Cork Collection exhibition at the Crawford Gallery which runs until August 28. Last November’s donation of unique maritime artworks from The Port of Cork to the gallery consists of 17 maritime paintings, a 1912 ships register referencing both Titanic and Lusitania, an illuminated address to Charles Stewart Parnell and a silver Admiralty oar from 1686.  Art by George Mounsey Wheatley Atkinson (1806-1884), Henry Albert Hartland (1840-1893), Robert Lowe Stopford (1813-1898) and Sean Keating (1889-1977) offers insights into the operations of the port down through the years.


    Tuesday, December 21st, 2021

    Rembrandt in Print at the Crawford Gallery in Cork until January 9 offers a rare opportunity to see 50 of the finest works from the collection of the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford. Hailed as the greatest painter of the Dutch Golden Age Rembrandt was one of the most innovative and experimental printmakers of the 17th century. This touring exhibition shows him as an unrivalled storyteller with prints dating from 1630 to the late 1650’s.  They are displayed here together for the first time. Opening hours over the Christmas period are extensive.

    Rembrandt van Rijn – The Rat Catcher (1632)


    Saturday, February 29th, 2020

    A Mountainous Wooded Landscape with figures gathering wood by Cork artist John Butts comes up at Sotheby’s sale of 44 Fitzwilliam Square, works from the estate of the late Patrick Kelly in London on March 18. It is estimated at £20,000-30,000. The talented artist, who died aged only 37 in 1764, worked as a teacher in Cork where his pupils included James Barry and Nathanial Grogan. He moved to Dublin around 1757 and worked predominantly as a scene painter. A comparable painting by the artist, Poachers: View in the Dargle, is at Tate Britain.  In a letter written after his death James Barry described him as … “an unfortunate man, who with all his merit never met with any thing but cares and misery, which I may say hunted him into the very grave. His cast of genius was very much that of Claude’s, whom he resembles without any imitation more than anybody that I know of”.  His View of Cork is one of the most popular works in the collection of the Crawford Gallery. 

    JOHN BUTTS – A Mountainous Wooded Landscape with figures gathering wood


    Saturday, August 31st, 2019

    The relic of a human heart is to be part of a floating art installation honouring migrant peoples in Cork. Heartship – a new project by artist Dorothy Cross featuring singer Lisa Hannigan – will celebrate the contribution of the Irish Naval services to the humanitarian crisis in the Mediterranean.  On Saturday September 14 the LE James Joyce will sail up the River Lee to Cork from Haulbowline.  The lone occupant visible on deck will be Lisa Hannigan and the recorded sound of her ethereal voice will emanate from the vessel. Discovered encased in lead in a  crypt in Cork in 1863 the heart belonged to a person unknown. It was acquired by General Pitt Rivers, then stationed in Cork, and became part of the extraordinary collection of artefacts housed in the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford. “Heartship has been haunting me for the past three years” Dorothy Cross said “wishing to honour the many hearts of migrant people who disappear below the ocean surface and lie unnamed on the sea bed”.  Renowned film maker Alan Gilsenan will work with Cross to create a film to embody Heartship. This will be screened at The Crawford Gallery. Previous projects by Dorothy Cross include Ghostship, a lightship painted with phospherous paint moored for three weeks in Dublin Bay in 1999 where it glowed in the dark each night. 

    Dorothy Cross with Capt. Brian Fitzgerald of the Irish Naval Service.


    Monday, February 18th, 2019

    The Canova casts at the Crawford Gallery in Cork.

    Restored Canova casts have gone on display in a re-vamped setting against a blue ground at the Crawford Gallery in Cork. The casts were a gift from Pope Pius VII to the Prince Regent, later George IV, as thanks to Britain for returning masterpieces looted by Napoleon. The Prince gifted them to the people of Cork in 1819 and about a dozen of the original gift survive today.

    Among them is a cast of the Apollo Belvedere, busts of Jupiter and Socrates, the goddess Concordia and Laocoon and his sons.  The casts have long been on display but they were conserved over the past two years by Eoghan Daltun in a project funded by the Heritage Council.

    Crawford Art Gallery Director Mary McCarthy says the gallery is seeing an unprecedented period of growth with over 230,000 visitors last year. She said the casts are much loved in Cork and nationally and she is very confident that people will come back to see “the old friends”.  A 22 million capital investment programme is to begin at the gallery soon.


    Saturday, February 6th, 2016
    The work of Cork born Regency period portraitist Adam Buck (1759-1833) is celebrated in an exhibition now on at the Crawford Gallery. One of Regency England’s most sought after portrait painters he worked in Cork and Dublin for 20 years before moving to London in 1795.  There he immediately gained a roster of star clients including the Duke of York and his scandalous mistress Mary Anne Clarke.

    The second of four surviving children Adam was born to a family of silversmiths in Cork. His younger brother Frederick (1765-1840) became an established miniature painter who worked in Cork.  The Adam Buck exhibition is a distilled version of the exhibition at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford last year entitled: An Elegant Society: Adam Buck, an artist in the age of Jane Austen. It contains works from the National Gallery of Ireland, the Royal Collections Trust and the Crawford Permanent Collection.  A monograph publication written by Peter Darvall will accompany the exhibition which is at the Crawford until April 9.

    (See post on for July 17, 2015).

    Adam Buck - Mary Anne Clarke by statue ©Private Collection.

    Adam Buck – Mary Anne Clarke by statue ©Private Collection.

    Adam Buck - First Steps ©Private Collection

    Adam Buck – First Steps ©Private Collection


    Wednesday, May 13th, 2015

    Still Life, c. 1959 © Norah McGuinness. Courtesy AIB Collection.

    Still Life, c. 1959 © Norah McGuinness. Courtesy AIB Collection.

    The first major exhibition of Irish art in London for 30 years opens today at The Mall Galleries. Featuring over 70 works from 1900 to the present day it draws on the collections of paintings, photography, tapestry and sculpture from the AIB Collection and the Crawford Gallery in Cork.

    Works by open air painters Aloysius O’Kelly, Sir John Lavery and Roderic O’Conor are represented, together with the ‘Dublin Painters’, Sean Keating, Jack B. Yeats, Paul and Grace Henry. Artists who celebrated the Irish way of life, like Harry Kernoff, as well as other experimenters who embraced new styles and themes, including Mary Swanzy, Mainie Jellett and Norah McGuinness, also feature. The contemporary scene is represented with major works by Louis le Brocquy, Colin Middleton, Sean Scully, photographer Willie Doherty and Royal Academician Hughie O’Donoghue. Younger emerging artists such as Shane Blount and Caroline McCarthy demonstrate the strength and depth of Irish art today.

    The Art of a Nation runs until May 31.


    Thursday, April 7th, 2011

    This rare Cork oil on canvas by Nathanial Grogan (1740-1807) was acquired by the Crawford Gallery for a hammer price of 12,000 at the Mealy's Mallow Castle sale. (click to enlarge)

    THIS important contemporary record of a landmark Cork industry which employed up to 2,500 people in the depressed times of the early 19th century has been acquired by the Crawford Gallery in Cork.

    The oil on canvas by Nathanial Grogan senior (1740-1807) was acquired by the Crawford Gallery in Cork at Mealy’s auction of contents from Mallow Castle on April 5 for a hammer price of 12,000.

    Measuring 36″ x 48″ it shows Bartholomew O’Sullivan’s Paper Manufactory, Ironworks and Foundry at Beechmount, near Dripsey, Co. Cork.

    There is an engraved version of this picture at Cork Public Museum.


    Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

    A very early view of Cork Harbour with Spike Island, artist unknown, from the Crawford Gallery Collection in Cork. (click to enlarge)

    A mid 19th century view of Blarney Castle by John Bosanquet from the Crawford Gallery Collection in Cork. (click to enlarge)

    A very happy Christmas to all readers of


    Saturday, October 23rd, 2010

    This vivid 1796 view of Killarney's lakes is by Jonathan Fisher. It is one of a set of 12 views to be sold at Sotheby's in London on November 4. (click to enlarge) UPDATE: IT MADE £3,500

    Some of the earliest acquatint views of Ireland, a set of 12 hand coloured plates of scenic locations amid Killarney’s lakes, will feature at the Sotheby’s auction of Travel, Atlases, Maps and Natural History in London on November 4.
    Lot 39, by Jonathan Fisher, is a description of the Lakes of Killarney illustrated with twelve prints of its most interesting views.  It was published in London in June of 1796.
    Each of the 12 hand coloured plates in the oblong folio carries the imprint: “London, Published by J. Fisher, June 1796”.  The set of 12 views was intended as a supplement (though complete in itself) to Fisher’s Scenery of Ireland, published in 1792-95.
    There is a set of these rare views in the collection of the Crawford Gallery in Cork.  If anything this should add to the interest of collectors.  Sotheby’s estimate the lot at £2,000-£3,000.