Anthony Cronin (1928-2016) was one of the most significant writers of recent times. Though primarily a poet, whose collections include the lyrically intellectual and self-searching RMS Titanic, The End of the Modern World, The Minotaur and The Fall, he was equally a gifted writer of prose. His range is expressed in works such as the brilliantly comic novel The Life of Riley, the mordantly poignant Dead As Doornails, and the definitive biographies of Samuel Beckett and Flann O'Brien, The Last Modernist and No Laughing Matter. Also a critic, he was author of the incisive A Question of Modernity and An Irish Eye and wrote a popular poetry column for The Sunday Independent. In his role as Advisor on Arts and Culture to An Taoiseach, Charles J Haughey he was a prime mover in the foundation of IMMA, the Heritage Council and Aosdána. He was elected a Saoi of Aosdána in 2003.
Arts Council Chair Sheila Pratschke said: "At a time of unprecedented flourishing for Irish writing, the Arts Council is pleased to honour the memory of poet, writer and Saoi of Aosdána, Anthony Cronin through this award” she added “Anthony Cronin, through his life’s work, as a poet, writer and special advisor to the Government, demonstrated a clear understanding of the need to support artists at all stages in their careers. This award aimed at mid-career writers looking to develop the international dimension of their practice compliments the Arts Council’s existing supports for writers.”
The primary purpose of the award is to support a mid-career writer of literary work and to enable him or her to develop further writing. For the purposes of this award a mid-career writer is defined as one who has, at the time of application, published at least a first book or collection. In addition to buying time to develop his or her work, the award has an additional purpose, which is to enable the writer to undertake travel or a residency abroad at a location of his or her choice for the purposes of research for the development of new work and for the development of artistic practice. In doing this, it is intended that the award will enable the selected writer to build the international dimension of his or her career and profile abroad.
The award, worth €13,000, includes €3,000 for international travel. Interested candidates are invited to apply online via Arts Council online services. The closing date for receipt of applications is 5.30pm, Thursday, 7 February 2019.