National Craft Gallery:
The National Craft Gallery is one of the most exciting artistic venues in the country. A commitment to excellence and innovation allows us to showcase some of the finest examples of contemporary craft.The National Craft Gallery is the Crafts Council of Ireland’s flagship exhibition space. It is housed in Castle Yard, the former stables of Kilkenny Castle. In 1965 these late 18th century buildings were converted to house Kilkenny Design Workshops. Free admission
In the early seventies Butler House was refurbished by the Kilkenny Design Centre, giving this Georgian property a unique contemporary feel. In 1989, the Kilkenny Civic Trust acquired the house, along with its important collection of Irish art. Walking among the rooms and hallways of Butler House is as rich as exploring Kilkenny’s surrounding medieval landscape. For tourists visiting this fabulous medieval city, Butler House is the perfect compliment to Kilkenny.
Undoubtedly the most impressive room in Kilkenny Castle is the Picture Gallery on the first floor, decorated in pre-Raphealite style during the 19th century. Its elaborate wooden roof, created by John Hungerford Pollen, is decorated with golden dragons, its walls are lined with Butler family portraits and the Carrara marble fireplace is richly adorned with carved foliage.
The Blackbird Gallery 18 William Street Kilkenny houses a collection of national and international works both on canvas and paper. Artists such as Louis Le Brocquy, Anne Madden, Charles Cullen, Barbara Rae hang alongside some of Irelands most exciting emerging artists forming a wonderful cross section of the very best of what Ireland has to offer. Established in 2004 The Blackbird is fast gaining a reputation as one of the very best galleries in Ireland. A visit to the gallery is a must do when in Kilkenny, it is open to the public, Friday, Saturday and some Sundays from 11 to 5pm, from Easter Wednesday to Saturday.