The new year is upon us, and already we can be confident that 2019 will be a great one for the arts in Ireland. Last month, the Council made its decisions in Strategic Funding and Partnership Funding, and organisations across the country have already started to log on to our online services website, where they can accept their offer of funding and their individual funding agreements.
These grants are vital for the arts, and mean that people right across the country will experience great work, but they still only form part of what the Arts Council funds and develops over the course of a year. Towards the end of this month we will issue details of how the Arts Council will invest our entire grant from Government of €75 million to benefit the arts in 2019, including Strategic and Partnership Funding, Arts Grant Funding, Projects, Festivals, Aosdána and many other awards, schemes and initiatives.
Of these, one of the most important is our Bursaries award. Its purpose is to support professional artists to develop their practice. Our aim is to give an artist the time and resources to think, research, reflect and critically engage with their art. With bursaries, the Arts Council is investing not just in the here-and-now, but in the development of the arts, through the individual artist, for many years to come.
This year’s deadline for bursary awards across more than ten artforms and areas of arts practice is 17:30 on Thursday 31 January. As always, I would encourage anyone applying to make sure they complete their application in plenty of time, just ar eagla na h-eagla.
With best wishes for 2019,