Kylemore Abbey Residency

Author: Dept. Staff

Kylemore Abbey Residency

Graduate students from Notre Dame’s Department of Art, Art History & Design joined graduate students from the New York Academy of Art and Dublin’s Royal Hibernian Academy last summer in a month-long art residency in Ireland.  The residency began with a week of cultural immersion in the city of Dublin where students visited museums and galleries, saw theater productions, talked to local artists and generally took in the heritage and culture of that great city. Then they traveled to the storied and breathtakingly beautiful Kylemore Abbey in Connemara, County Galway, where they spent the rest of the month creating their artwork in that splendid setting surrounded by green hills. The residency culminated in an exhibition called Immersion that featured the paintings, drawings, video, photography, and textile work created by the residents. 

MFA students: Ana Fleming, Brittany Williams, and Cassandra Schifano

While at Connemara, students not only worked in their studios, they also made local excursions that included taking hikes, visiting local artists, taking a trip to the Aran Islands, visiting a sheep farm, and eating a lot of extremely good food washed down an incomparable pint of Guinness! The residency featured lectures by numerous scholars and artists as well as performances by Irish dancers, actors and musicians. 

Programs at Kylemore Abbey are directed by Lisa Caulfield with this year’s art residency overseen by painting professor Maria Tomasula. This wonderful residency came about through the vision and support of one of professor Tomasula’s former students, Jaclyn Dooner, who earned her BFA degree at Notre Dame, and her MFA at the New York Academy of Art. Including the Irish art students from the Royal Hibernian Academy in Dublin expanded the cross-cultural interactions and made for truly productive critiques and discussions for the residents.

Originally published by Dept. Staff at on October 02, 2019.