Art Bookshop Ireland

Inspirational Arts Photography Graduate Award 2019

on September 29, 2019

Launch 2pm Sat 5 October
Running 6-27 October
At The Library Project, 4 Temple Bar Street, Dublin 2

We celebrate the tenth year of the Inspirational Arts Photography Award!
The award is open to students graduating in photography from the Technological University DublinGriffith College DublinDún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology, and the Limerick School of Art & Design. Entry is automatic and is based on the students’ work presented in the Graduate Exhibition of each of the participating colleges. The judge of this year’s award is Ángel Luis González Fernández, founder and director of the PhotoIreland Foundation.

The finalists of Inspirational Arts Photography Award 2019 are:

  • Iryna Baklan, Common-or-Garden - Griffith College Dublin
  • Gary Byrne, 18 Nautical Miles - Technological University Dublin
  • Louise Wallace, Hidden in Hazel - Limerick School of Art and Design
  • Sadhbh Kenny, (un)Steady - Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology


Iryna Baklan, Common-or-Garden
Griffith College Dublin

Rooted in the unspectacular but day-to-day creating of space, Common-or-Garden is a photographic exploration of Dublin’s suburbia. Neither completely natural nor fully human, the front garden functions as a buffer zone between public and private, serving as a first impression for the hasty passer-by.

In densely populated areas where each square metre is costly, the house is a desired and meaningful space, which we construct or decorate to our liking. At first glance, suburbia is rife of identically built houses. However, through repetitive observation, the spectrum of differences becomes more apparent. With the passing of time and owner’s hand, the facades gain personality, owning their residents just as much as they own them.

These domesticated landscapes, with their infrastructures, functionalities, and peculiarities, can be seen as reflective of our society; units of individuality striving for customisation within the wider, shared environment.

Gary Byrne, 18 Nautical Miles
Technological University Dublin

This project contemplates ‘Brexit’ and its implications for the islands of Ireland and Great Britain. Focusing on ports, seascapes and spaces around the south-east coast of England and Ireland, these photographs present a man-altered landscape and the crumbling sea walls and cliffs that delineate the borders of each island. A blurring of documentary evidence and fictional narrative takes place to show an imagined future – a dark, dreary and dystopian landscape.

This work is a conceptual take on the many transformations being wrought by the separation of these islands from Europe, as the UK begins its political and legal separation from the EU. The title refers to the measurement of the shortest distance between the mainland of Europe and the English coast.


Louise Wallace, Hidden in Hazel
Limerick School of Art and Design

This project explores the interactions faced by those living an existence free from rapid digital connections and data exchange. Hidden in Hazel offers four glimpsed character studies of people who choose to live a more isolated ‘analogue’ existence with little or no connection to the digital realm, instead choosing to focus on their own personal creative endeavours and unique existences. The investigation is based in a remote part of the Burren known as the New Line. Wallace creates a collaborative experience with these four characters, and documents the importance of these residual ‘analogue people’ who have chosen to exist without any digital footprint. In it, she proposes that the relation developed with the four protagonists is as important as the resulting artworks.


Sadhbh Kenny, (un)Steady
Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology

(un)Steady is based on conversations surrounding relationships and modern dating amongst my generation. It is comprised of 11 portraits and a short film in which people discuss their opinions of the trials and tribulations of modern dating in our society, from “ghosting” to their expectations of love, this project describes how technology and modern influences have affected this generations view on relationships.


About Inspirational Arts

Inspirational Arts, a fine art printing studio based in Dublin, had two goals in mind when it established the Award in 2009. They wanted to give something back to the photography students who have supported them over the years with their custom. In particular, Inspirational Arts wanted to encourage new graduates of photography as they take the first steps of their career after college by providing a showcase for their photography outside of the college context and an entry on their CV.

Visit to find out more about the studio.

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