The Claremorris Open Exhibition

The National Irish Open exhibition
7 September 2012 to 28 September 2012

In 2012, I was invitied to be the selector and curator for the Claremorris Open Exhibition in 2012. This was my third visit to COE. Each year a different adjudicator is asked to select the show. He or she is given full responsibility for the exhibition selected. Past Adjudicators/Curators have been drawn from The British Council, The Arts Councils of Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales, the British Press (Sunday Times, Observer, Daily Telegraph) and from major British and European Galleries.


Founded in 1978, the organisers say that 'From its humble beginnings in a school gym, the Claremorris Open Exhibition has evolved into one of the premier events on the Irish visual arts calendar. COE has served as a showcase for the very best in contemporary art, both Irish and international. As both a competition and event the exhibition has proven to be fluid in nature, adapting to the constantly evolving nature of contemporary art and the changing contexts in which it takes place. From a traditional, gallery-based exhibition of painting and sculpture to a site-based, multimedia showcase of all that is exciting, challenging, weird and wonderful, COE has consistently remained a vital force in Irish art.


Both as a consequence of and a compliment to the consistently high standard of work showcased in the exhibition, COE has become renowned, both far and wide, for the calibre of curators seeking the pleasure of serving as both adjudicator and curator of the event. Indeed, the list of past curators serves as a roll call of some of the most highly regarded curators from both Ireland and the U.K. We believe that maintaining such a high standard in the selection of our curators has played an important role in ensuring the continuing high standard and success of the exhibition.'